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Davis Delays Announcement

Father's ill health extends governor speculation

By Richard Whittaker, 3:40PM, Thu. Aug. 29, 2013

Sen. Wendy Davis: Delaying governor's race decision for her father's health
Sen. Wendy Davis: Delaying governor's race decision for her father's health
Photo by John Anderson

Speculation has been rife that Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, would announce her future electoral plans some time around Labor Day. However, Democrats and potential Republican opponents can stand easy across the vacation. Davis' office has just issued a press release, saying that she is busy tending to her sick father.

Ever since her attempt to filibuster Senate Bill 5, new GOP-authored abortion regulations during the first special session of the 83rd legislature, Davis has become the top contender to run for the empty Texas governor's seat in 2014. The filibuster may not have derailed the bill permanently (it came back in the second special as House Bill 2 and passed), but it has undoubtedly raised her profile from that of a junior state senator to a nationally-recognized champion of women's rights. That has parlayed into her position as presumptive Democratic gubernatorial nominee: That is, if she wants it. Davis has not ruled out running for her Fort Worth seat again.

The expected announcement of her future plans has been pushed back while her father, actor and director Jerry Russell, recovers from complications from surgery. Here's Davis' statement in full.

As you know, my father has been in the hospital for the past two weeks making good but slow progress in recovering from complications following major surgery. We remain hopeful that the improvements we've seen in his health will continue. As a result, I will not be making any official announcement related to my future plans for public office so that I can focus on the continued care and recovery of my father. It's my hope that he will be able to join me and my family in the next few weeks when I make a public announcement. I want to thank everyone for the outpouring of prayers and support. We've received messages from all over the state and they've been so warm and encouraging.

So, in simple terms, the political wait goes on as real life takes precedence.

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