Texas State Senator Wendy Davis has been a rising star in politics. She has her eye on the Governor’s Mansion, which would be an excellent springboard to higher office still.
Known to some as Abortion Barbie, her main claim to fame is an 11-hour filibuster of a state law to protect children who are old enough to feel pain from being dismembered in the womb. The law passed anyway, but for Davis’s supporters it was a modern liberal version of the defense of the Alamo.
As if her heroic devotion to killing fetuses over 20 weeks old weren’t enough to make her a rock star on the Left, there is also her story — a teenage single mother who lived in a trailer park and worked her way through Harvard. She has been milking this narrative for all it is worth:
Davis is presenting her story on websites, interviews, speeches and campaign videos. Last week, NBC’s Today show became the latest media outlet to showcase the story of Davis’ difficult early years in a flattering piece.
Using her story to inspire new voters, particularly women, youths and minorities, is a key part of the campaign’s strategy to overcome the state’s heavy Republican bent.
Whether this will affect her rise remains to be seen, but the story turns out to be mostly fake:
Davis was 21, not 19, when she was divorced. She lived only a few months in the family mobile home while separated from her husband before moving into an apartment with her daughter.
A single mother working two jobs, she met Jeff Davis, a lawyer 13 years older than her, married him and had a second daughter. He paid for her last two years at Texas Christian University and her time at Harvard Law School, and kept their two daughters while she was in Boston. When they divorced in 2005, he was granted parental custody, and the girls stayed with him.
While taking care of the kids back in Texas, Jeff Davis cashed in his 401(k) and took out a loan to put her through Harvard Law School, an aspect of the story Wendy’s feminist supporters would rather not dwell on. When she came back to Texas, he got her started in politics by opening doors that helped her get on the Fort Worth City Council.
They divorced because she walked out on him and their daughters. The day she did it gives some insight into her character:
Jeff Davis said that was right around the time the final payment on their Harvard Law School loan was due. “It was ironic,” he said. “I made the last payment, and it was the next day she left.”
If you don’t have a problem tearing apart children old enough to feel pain, you probably won’t feel much guilt over using and discarding adults.
Said a former colleague and political supporter who worked with Wendy when she was on the Council:
“Wendy is tremendously ambitious. She’s not going to let family or raising children or anything else get in her way.”
He said: “She’s going to find a way, and she’s going to figure out a way to spin herself in a way that grabs at the heart strings. A lot of it isn’t true about her, but that’s just us who knew her. But she’d be a good governor.”
Hopefully Texans won’t take his word for that, or eventually she could claw her way into a position to treat the whole country the way she treated her husband.