Wendy Davis is an author, attorney, and former Texas State Senator. She is also the keynote speaker at Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota’s 12th annual Progress on the Prairie! Throughout the month, we will be providing information about Wendy and her accomplishments to prepare you for her appearance on November 29, 2016. Our third post is about Wendy’s political career, including her filibuster as a Texas Senator in 2013 and her run for Governor in 2014.
Perhaps her most noteworthy political action was the June 25, 2013 filibuster to block Senate Bill 5. This bill was a proposal to ban abortions after 20 weeks, require clinics to meet the standards of hospital-style surgical centers, and mandate that doctors that perform abortions have admitting privileges at a nearby hospital. The filibuster required that she hold the floor until midnight, after which the Senate’s special session ended, meaning they would no longer be able to vote on the measure. After 11 hours – three hours short of midnight – it was said that Davis had gone off topic, which forced a vote on whether the filibuster could continue. Despite Republican efforts, the filibuster continued through midnight and the close of the special session. The bill was dead. The next day, Governor Rick Perry called for a second special session and the bill was eventually passed by the House and Senate. However, the bill was eventually ruled unconstitutional by the United States Supreme Court in June of 2016.
The filibuster attracted national attention and national fundraising efforts. In 2013, Davis intended to run for re-election to the Senate, but changed her mind and announced candidacy for Texas Governor instead. This was encouraged by groups like Battleground Texas and EMILY’S List.
On March 4, 2014 she won the Democratic nomination with 79.1 percent (432,065 votes), defeating her only challenger, Reynaldo Madrigal. Wendy was the first female nominee for Texas governor since Gov. Ann Richards was defeated in 1994 by George W. Bush. In the general election, she lost to Republican nominee Greg Abbott, the outgoing Texas Attorney General.
We hope you can join us on November 29th to hear Wendy Davis speak at our annual event. Join us for an inspiring evening together as we build fortitude and determination for 2017! For more information, contact Amy Jacobson at firstname.lastname@example.org or 701-526-0726.