Why Wendy Davis will lose

Naomi Shaefer Riley:
Want to know why Wendy Davis will have trouble winning higher office in Texas or anywhere else in America? It’s not because she stretched the truth in her “from mobile-home-living single mom to Harvard Law grad” campaign biography, nor because her husband paid for her education, nor even because she placed a lot of value on her career.

Nope: It’s because Davis, the Lone Star State senator who became famous for her filibuster of an abortion-limiting bill in Texas, lost custody of her children to her ex-husband.

This revelation about Davis’ past, which came to light thanks to reporting by Wayne Slater at The Dallas Morning News, is nothing less than shocking to most women, regardless of their political affiliation.

According to Slater’s account, Davis decided to leave her children, then ages 8 and 2, with their father in Fort Worth while she went off to Harvard Law School. Who could resist the siren call of the Ivy League? Well, I suspect that most women and plenty of men would, if it meant moving across the country from their kids for three years.

But before we get to that, note two things. First of all, that 8-year-old was not her husband’s biological child. I don’t mean to cast any aspersions on Jeff Davis’ commitment to his daughters; in fact, he looks like the knight in shining armor of this story.

He not only took on raising his own daughter alone, but also another girl, who’d been abandoned first by her father and then her mother.

Second: After Jeff finished paying off the last of Wendy’s school loans, she filed for divorce and gave up custody of her children. According to Jeff, his wife just decided, “While I’ve been a good mother, it’s not a good time for me right now.”
The single mother label she claimed does not fit.  She was a divorced mother paying child support to the father who was raising the girls.  That is a different struggle than the one she implied with her narrative.  It is also hard to explain away as a discrepancy in her resume.


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