Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis hasn’t been shy about her gubernatorial ambitions. “You know I would be lying if I told you I hadn’t had aspirations,” she told MSNBC’s Chris Hayes.
Now, she has reportedly made up her mind to go for it.
The Fort Worth lawmaker-turned progressive hero is running for governor, The Associated Press reported on Thursday.
Two anonymous sources informed the AP of her decision. Politico is also reporting Davis and advisers have started to alert influential Democrats.
The 50-year-old Democrat has been touting some “big news” coming on October 3 and invited supporters to sign up for an alert on her future plans.
On October 3, I’ll announce my future plans at the same place where I received my high school diploma. Join us: http://t.co/cy6ATcCAvT
— Wendy Davis (@WendyDavisTexas) September 26, 2013
I’ve got some news to share with you on October 3. Sign up to be the first to know: http://t.co/DAnSAj9kxZ pic.twitter.com/4UBFDYBIVE — Wendy Davis (@WendyDavisTexas) September 25, 2013
A reporter for NBC 5 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, Omar Villafranca, tweeted out that she’s staffing up for a campaign.
Deep-pocketed Dem told me @WendyDavisTexas camp asked several folks to serve on campaign committees for Gov race. @nbcdfw
— Omar Villafranca (@OmarVillafranca) September 26, 2013
Last month, she confirmed that she’s been toying with the idea of running for governor.
“I’m working very hard to decide what my next steps will be,” Davis said at a luncheon at Washington D.C.’s National Press Club. “I can say with absolute certainty that I will run for one of two offices, either my state senate seat or the governor.”
Davis rose to national fame standing up for women’s reproductive rights –quite literally –on June 25 during a marathon filibuster in the Texas Capitol. Her passionate efforts (and stamina) helped temporarily block new restrictions on abortions across the state.
Hundreds of protesters jammed into the state capitol to support her and #standwithwendy spiked across social media platforms, including a tweet from President Obama.
Twitter followers weren’t the only thing that flowed in after the filibuster: about $1 million in donations poured in from around the country. (And the brand of pink sneakers she wore quickly sold out on Amazon.)
Davis’ personal story–she’s the daughter of a single mom and was a single mom herself; she put herself through community college and then Harvard Law–has enhanced her profile and popularity.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry said earlier in the year he won’t seek re-election after serving 14 years in office. A possible competitor for Davis would be Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott–he announced his candidacy back in the summer.
It’s been a while since the largely right-leaning Texas has had a Democrat for governor. The last Dem to take over the Texas governor’s office was Ann Richards, who was elected in 1990. Recent hopeful talk about “turning Texas blue” is probably overstated, said one pollster in June. But Davis has overcome long odds before.