If you’re like most Democrats in Texas right now, you’re probably disappointed that the GOP were able to win this round of the battle for Women’s Rights. I don’t intend to make light of that fact… this law will be devastating to hundreds of thousands of Texas Women.
But from a purely political aspect, I also hope that Democrats are a little proud to finally have some battle scars to show for the fight. Sufficient to say, it’s been a long time since the Texas Democratic Party has showed up in full force like they have over the last month.
So here’s the burning question… How do Dems take what happened in June and July of 2013, and run it right through November of 2014? As we know, the only way to truly win the war is to win statewide, and take back the legislature.
Here are my thoughts on how to get it done.
The GOP have become masters of misinformation. They perfect the rhetoric of “conviction” and “moral values” while painting Democrats as scum for trying to be realists. They spend a lot of time and money to craft a compelling narrative, while Democrats try to do this little thing called GOVERNING after the election is over.
But what Democrats need to do is raise some hell… steal the GOP’s thunder a bit. And unlike years past, Texas Democrats have a plethora of issues to bludgeon them with right now.
If I were Wendy Davis, Kirk Watson, Marc Veasey or anyone else trying to run statewide, I’d milk this bus tour stuff for all it’s worth. The next place you go? Schools. Go back and interview school teachers about what they’ve had to endure under Perrystan’s (Abbottstan’s?) budget cuts, and then convince voters that even with SOME restoration, it’s just not enough to keep up with the MASSIVE growth of the state’s educational needs. This is perfect for August or September.
After that? You launch ANOTHER bus tour in later 2013… maybe Flu season? Go across the state to ERs and talk to hospitals overloaded with uninsured patients. Rail against the Texas GOP for turning down the money that could go to help these folks get insurance through MediCaid expansion. Doctors and hospitals are already upset, so it would be pretty easy to get them to express that frustration on camera and for future Democratic ads. I’d call it the “CrisisCaid Bus Tour.”
By the time those two things are done, you’ve managed to keep the base ginned up, registering voters, and have plenty of funding built up between Battleground Texas and the State Party organizations… taking Democrats into the “home stretch”– the actual 2014 campaign season. It’s a play right out of the GOP’s play book, and that’s why I know it would work.
Lastly, Texas Democrats need to spend a little time on YouTube, and look up this guy they used to know… Someone by the name of William Jefferson CLINTON. Nowadays, it just seems that the Democratic Party is ashamed of the South, and really has no idea how to communicate with Southern voters. Even in Texas, we all look up to Ann Richards as our guiding light back to statewide office. So why are we following her in the dark? Listen to her SPEECHES. Notice that neither she nor Bill ever back down from a fight with the GOP, no matter how ridiculous it may seem to be. LISTEN to how she and Clinton talk… how they are able to argue the case not for “big government” but for effective government. It’s a message that has been lost to the Democratic Party, but it’s one that can win in Texas if properly revived.