How to know Wendy Davis is seen as a credible threat to Texas Republicans' stranglehold on state politics: They're ripping small inconsistencies in her biography as solid proof she lied about her life story.
Every conservative online publication today had a screaming headline in their newsletters about Davis saying she has lied to her adoring public about her past. Specifically, it seems that they're most interested in her claim of being a single teen mom, at least over at Breitbart News. By the tone of it, you'd think she was actually the daughter of a wealthy oilman who bought her way into politics instead of someone who worked her way there.
In the world of politics, getting a date or an age wrong is a lie, unless you're a Republican, and then you can even lie about your immigration story and get away with it. (Marco Rubio, are you listening?)
Until now, Davis' official story began at age 19, when she found herself a divorced teenage mother living in a mobile home. From there, she worked two jobs to support her daughter and attended community college followed by Harvard Law "with the help of academic scholarships, student loans, and state and federal grants," according to her campaign website.
The Morning News corrects that record: Davis was 21 when she divorced, and only lived in a trailer for a few months before securing an apartment for her and her daughter.
The newspaper also points out that Davis married a second husband at age 24, Jeff Davis, who paid for her final two years at Texas Christian University.
“It was community resources. We paid for it together," Davis told the newspaper, adding that she "was a vibrant part of contributing to our family finances from the time I graduated to the time we separated in 2003."
When Davis got into Harvard, her ex-husband took care of their children and took out funds from his 401(k) account as well as a loan to pay for her final year there, according to the Morning News.
Jeff Davis said paying for part of his ex-wife's education wasn't a "big deal," and told the Morning News that her past financial struggles were real.
So these "lies" Republicans are trumpeting were an error in her age when she divorced and how she paid for her degree? This is a disqualifying event?
Who actually cares about this? No one but Republicans, who are far more interested in electing Greg Abbot, a man who is as close to John-Birch-in-a-box as I've ever seen.
Update: Annie's List released this statement in response to the attacks, which have now been picked up by CNN and other 'mainstream' organizations:
“We’re not surprised Republicans have attempted to undermine Wendy Davis’ campaign by calling her past into question – we have seen similar attacks launched against women candidates before. The recent personal attacks on Wendy Davis and her family are blatant attempts to thwart her campaign and undermine her success. Just last week, the Davis campaign announced impressive fundraising numbers from donors in every county in Texas. Greg Abbott is running scared and for good reason. Senator Davis’ personal story is a compelling narrative of perseverance and hard work that millions of Texans have responded to. It is appalling that Republicans would attack the details of that story rather than focus on the issues affecting Texas families.
“Disputing the details of Wendy Davis’ life is especially offensive to the many Texas women who can relate to her story. In trying to tear down Senator Davis’ campaign and her personal story, Republicans are also tearing down all Texans who have overcome difficult circumstances. It’s clear Greg Abbott doesn’t understand Wendy Davis’ struggles and the struggles of millions of Texans, nor does he want to.”