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Davis: "I Do Not Understand How Women Can Support" Abbott

Davis: "I Do Not Understand How Women Can Support" Abbott

AUSTIN, Texas — In an interview on MSNBC Monday afternoon, Texas State Senator Wendy Davis, the Democrat nominee for Governor, attacked Texas women who have refused to support her campaign. Host Alex Wagner remarked on the number of abortion clinics that have closed after Texas’ new abortion law went into effect, and said that one of the “most important questions” was whether this issue would affect the governor’s race. Wagner cited the recent Texas Lyceum poll showing Davis trailing her Republican opponent, Attorney General Greg Abbott, by nearly ten points and asked the candidate for her reaction. 

[Transcript beginning at approximately the two minute mark.]

ALEX WAGNER: “One thing that has been surprising to me in this, is that Greg Abbott somehow miraculously is running ahead of you by a couple points in the polls among women and I wonder if you think this latest turn of events in Texas in terms of access to abortion will change that dynamic?”

SEN. DAVIS: “You know, I truly do not understand how women can support his candidacy.”

As Breitbart Texas’ Bob Price previously reported, the Texas Lyceum poll has been questioned because of its unusually slanted sample: the poll oversamples Democrats, young voters, single voters, and Hispanics, in excess of their actual representation among Texas voters. Nevertheless, this poll showed Davis trailing by nearly ten percentage points, and an internal poll commissioned by the Abbott campaign showed Davis getting thumped by double that margin, 53 percent to 35 percent. To date, there has not been a single poll of this race that shows Davis even within the margin of error of beating Abbott.

Specifically in the context of Texan women’s opinions on the issue of abortion, Davis’s remarks seem out of touch. Previous Breitbart Texas coverage of this race has noted the challenges faced by Davis’ campaign and specifically, her failure to successfully win over Texas women voters, who make up 55 percent of the Texas electorate and are mostly pro-life. Polling shows very high support for banning late-term abortions after twenty weeks like Texas’ new abortion law does: a Texas Tribune poll showed 62 percent overall support and a very close 61 percent among female respondents. A majority of independents in Texas support such restrictions and even Texas Democrats have tended to poll more pro-life than Democrats nationally. As PJ Media’s Bryan Preston noted, Texas’ abortion bill was sponsored by two female legislators, State Representative Jodie Laubenberg and State Senator Donna Campbell, who is an emergency room physician.

Abbott’s campaign was quick to condemn Davis’ remarks, with Texans for Greg Abbott Deputy Communications Director Amelia Chasse calling her words “insulting,” and issuing the following statement:

Carrie Simmons, Communications Director for the conservative group Red State Women, similarly rejected Davis’ assertion that she spoke for Texas women. “Wendy Davis’ comments in today’s MSNBC interview are offensive to all Texas women,” Simmons told Breitbart Texas. “Women do not base their vote on gender alone. For too long Wendy Davis has confined women to a single issue. Greg Abbott has a proven record of fighting for Texas women by arresting over 4,500 sex offenders and making Texas number one in the nation for child support collections. Wendy is wrong for women and wrong for Texas.”

Follow Sarah Rumpf on Twitter at @rumpfshaker.

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