Could Wendy Davis win back SD10?

Could Wendy Davis win back SD10? Nope.

Wendy Davis lost her home district by 7.5% to Greg Abbott a few weeks ago. According to my analysis of the Tarrant County precinct report, Davis earned 83451 votes compared to Greg Abbott's 96927 votes in SD10. That is a 53.74% to 46.26% defeat in the head-to-head vote.

A few points:

1. Wendy Davis now has the profile of a national liberal Democrat in SD10. In 2012, Wendy Davis won re-election against Mark Shelton. Even while Mitt Romney and Ted Cruz both picked up 53% in SD10, Davis obscured her liberal voting record enough to get 51.1% of the vote. Put differently, Wendy ran nearly 6 points ahead of Obama's 45.4% vote share in 2012.

Wendy now runs even with Obama in SD10. Romney beat Obama by about 8 points in the district. In 2014, Abbott beat Wendy Davis by about the same 8 points.

Obama and Battleground Texas intended use Wendy Davis to turn Texas blue. Instead Wendy Davis turned SD10 red.

Konni Burton turned SD10 red

2. Konni Burton outperformed Greg Abbott in SD10, winning with 54.2% of the head-to-head vote. Tell me which Austin lobbyist would've predicted that. She got a nasty hit piece put on her by the Texas Medical Association and got negative coverage from the Star-Telegram, but still ran half a point in front of Greg Abbott.

Looking precinct by precinct, Burton and Abbott performed quite similarly. Burton outperformed Abbott because she did slightly better in the highest turnout Republican precincts.

3. When you hire bad political consultants, it is very hard to win. Mark Shelton and Wendy Davis both hired political consultants (Bryan Eppstein and Jeremy Bird, respectively) who didn't know what they were doing. In the process of losing those races, both Eppstein and Bird showed themselves to be pretty bad at math.

Candidates who can't even hire good political consultants should not hold office.

Posted by Evan @ 11/29/14 02:02 PM


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