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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Wendy Davis shoots self in foot

The Wendy Davis campaign tried its hand at media manipulation with unpleasant results. Wendy shot herself in the foot. Everyone already knew she is no Sarah Palin but the awkward shotgun pose in was the least damaging outcome. The Travis County Democratic Party held a fundraiser with Wendy on Tuesday, and she of course delivered the obligatory stump speech. Pretty tepid news but the campaign even managed to screw up the rubber chicken dinner. Sometimes fund raisers are open to the press and sometimes they are not and the media seems accept this as a fact of life. But as Davis has been getting bad press lately her campaign decided to exclude the media except for the Texas Tribune which live streamed the entire event.
Bad as that might seem it gets worse. The Texas Tribune is not a real newspaper. It's a liberal website with with limited appeal. It's Wikipedia entry reads;
The Texas Tribune is a nonprofit media organization in Texas in the United States. Headquartered in downtown Austin, Texas, it is devoted to increasing knowledge and participation in state government and public policy. It aims to promote civic engagement through original, explanatory journalism and public events.Its website and content in various delivery platforms serves as an alternative news source for Texas, with a goal of supplementing mainstream media sources.
The fawning national media ran with the picture of Davis gingerly holding a shotgun that once belonged to Texas Governor Ann Richards which was presented to Davis by Clark Richards, the governors son. The upshot of the story which was not reported even on Fox was that the other Richards, Cecile Richards, president of the Planned Parenthood Federation of America was also in attendance attesting to the fact that Davis is a one issue candidate.
The Texas media did not take the shutout in stride. The San Antonio Express-News blasted Davis.
Political campaigns expect unbiased coverage from reporters, as they should.
In the same breath, reporters expect unbiased access from campaigns, as they should.
Wayne Slater of the Dallas Morning News who first broke the news of Wendy's fictionalized biography was hardly understanding.
Organizers decided to bar the press from the ballroom in what seemed like an ill-conceived effort to control the message. The room was too crowded, reporters were told.
A live online stream of the speeches was arranged by the Travis County Democratic Party, sponsor of the annual fundraising bash, through the Texas Tribune, a news website. But the arrangement made it difficult to report a fuller account of the evening, which apparently was the idea.
For someone whose credibility is on the line Davis has a funny way of restoring trust by the media.

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