My favorite Texas bloggers, the Texas Progressive Alliance, of which I’m a card-carrying member, voted to name Texas Senator Wendy Davis as our Texan of the Year. Of course, Senator Davis is vying to become the Democratic Party’s nominee for Texas Governor for 2014. She has served her senate district well, has been an effective campaigner and victorious in a red-leaning district, and has made a national name for herself, especially on issues of education and women’s reproductive rights. She has the right stuff to win statewide and this blogger is definitely supporting her.
AUSTIN—The Texas Progressive Alliance, the nation’s largest state-based association of online and netroots activists, today named State Senator Wendy Davis recipient of its Texan of the Year Award for 2013.
“Senator Davis’ actions this year made her a clear choice. Our vote was unanimous,” said Vince Leibowitz, Chair of the Alliance. Leibowitz said Senator Davis’ June filibuster of Senate Bill 5 on behalf of Texas women and the preservation of reproductive rights was a courageous action that served to galvanize and energize Texas Democrats. “Senator Davis’ courage to stand up and block this outrageous legislation helped raise awareness in Texas of the assault on a woman’s right to choose that our legislature has waged for the last decade, as well as the extraordinary measures right-wing Republicans in Texas will take both to trample the rights of women and their own colleagues in government,” Leibowitz continued.
Not only did Davis’ actions draw national attention to Texas, but her filibuster and subsequent campaign for Texas Governor have galvanized Texas Democrats. “We have not seen this kind of excitement for a non-presidential election in Texas in many years. We see Democrats are energized, organized, and ready to take back our state for the people. To a great extent, we have Senator Davis and her courageous actions to thank for this; she served as a unifying figure for our party to rally around, and her actions will both strenghten the party in the long run and serve to expand our base,” said Charles Kuffner, Vice Chair of the Alliance.
Previous Texan of the Year recipients are: Carolyn Boyle of Texas Parent PAC (2006); Texas House Democratic Leaders State Reps. Jim Dunnam, Garnet F. Coleman, and Pete Gallego (2007); the Harris County Democratic Party Coordinated Campaign (2008); Houston Mayor Annise Parker (2009); Fort Worth City Councilman Joel Burns (2010); and the protesters of the Tar Sands Blockade (2012). There was no award given in 2011.