Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott and state senator Wendy Davis will tee it up in their second debate as they head into the homestretch of the Texas governor’s race this Tuesday in Dallas. Abbott has made his name as the top law enforcement officer in the Lone Star State while Davis claim to fame was her opposition to a bill which limits abortions to the first 120 days of pregnancy. Abbott was born in Wichita Falls, Texas while Davis represents Fort Worth.
Davis earned national attention last year when she filibustered for 11 hours in her pink tennis shoes in an attempt to stop an anti-late abortion bill in the Texas Legislature. The bill made it illegal to obtain abortions after 120 days of pregnancy. Governor Rick Perry called a special session to consider the bill. Davis’ dramatic support of late term abortions gained her appearances on MSNBC, CNN and many other national outlets. Perry called for a second special session in which the bill was passed into law.
Davis again spoke out against the bill after it passed on July 13, 2013, according to the Texas Tribune.
That performance also led Abbott to say that “the leading supporter (Davis) of late term abortions is running for governor of the great state of Texas.”
The second debate will be held at 8 p.m. this Tuesday and hosted live by KERA-TV. It will be an hour. The first debate was in Edinburg, Texas and was notable for its lack of fireworks.
Abbott gained national fame when he orchestrated the only successful prosecutions of the FLDS leader Warren Jeffs for sexual assault of children cases. As Texas Attorney General, he requested Perry extradite Jeffs from Utah after the court of appeals in that state reversed his convictions there. The State of Arizona dismissed its charges and released from jail. Jeffs married two underaged girls, according to the evidence presented in court in Texas during his tiral. Jeffs was listed as one of the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted Men at one time. More than 10 other FLDS polygamous leaders were also successfully prosecuted by the Texas Attorney General’s Office under Abbott’s direction. Local prosecutors in San Angelo and Eldorado, Texas teamed up with the AG’s office in the investigation and prosecution of the FLDS cases.
In the first debate, Abbott said that he wanted to create a “safe culture for women and children in Texas.” He cited his Christian faith as the basis for his opposition to legalizing late term abortions.
Also in the first debate Abbott asked Davis if she regretted voting for President Barack Obama in the last election. She evaded the question and made remarks to the effect she was busy running for governor.
Davis has received strong support from Vice President Joe Biden and expected Democratic nominee for president Hillary Clinton. Clinton encouraged people to support Davis at a recent Women’s Forum meeting.
Abbott also was influenced by his Christian faith when he successfully argued in the U.S. Supreme Court in favor of allowing a monument of the Ten Commandments to remain on Capitol grounds in Austin.
Predictably, the crisis on the Texas border was an issue during the debate in Edinburg which is near the boundary line between Texas and Mexico. Abbott has campaigned on the issue of strengthening protection of the Texas border by using state resources since he says the federal government has failed to act effectively. Victims of drug cartel murders have been found along a pipeline which runs across South Texas.
Also creating concern about the security of the border is the fact people suspected of being connected with violence in the Middle East have been apprehended crossing the porous border.
Davis has run on a platform of improving Texas education. Abbott has opposed the controversial CSCOPE curriculum in Texas schools which excluded many parents from even being informed of their children’s course contents. CSCOPE taught students American patriots were terrorists and instructed students to dress as Muslims in school. Abbott has promised if he is elected CSCOPE will not survive in the Texas public school system.
Abbott’s wife Cecilia is a former school principal and has been active in education. She will become the first Latina first lady in Texas history if her husband is elected.
Abbott has led in all the polls regarding the governor’s race so Davis is expected to come out swinging in the last debate. Many observers feel she will need a strong performance to change the tide of this election campaign.
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