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Real classy:

Wendy Davis got a rude welcome by supporters of Republican opponent Greg Abbott in advance of a Los Angeles fundraiser – life-sized posters depicting her as “Abortion Barbie.” The posters showed Davis’ face on a scantily clad barbie doll with a plastic baby in her belly. The Davis campaign called on Abbott to denounce the posters. Abbott and Davis face each other in the race for Texas governor.

Abbott campaign spokesman Matt Hirsch said: “It’s not affiliated with our campaign and we find it appalling.” The campaign said it didn’t know who put up the posters.

Davis campaign spokesman Zac Petkanas called the posters offensive and said they demonstrate that the Abbott campaign is out of touch with women. ”This is just another in a long line of offensive actions and comments by Greg Abbott in an attempt to demean Wendy Davis and women across Texas.” Last year, Abbott thanked a supporter who called Davis “retard Barbie” on Twitter.

The executive director of Annie’s List, which raises money for Democratic women candidates who support abortion rights, said the episode underscores a series of miscues by the Abbott campaign and supporters that Democrats are using to claim there is a GOP war on women. ”This is the same man who chose to appear with Ted Nugent, who has continually made offensive comments about women. And Greg Abbott has said he would not support equal pay for equal work for all Texans,” said Grace Garcia. “He needs to make it clear such personal attacks are not acceptable.” - Dallas Morning News, 5/22/14

By the way, Abbott is going after Davis for her fundraiser in Los Angeles:

Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott (R) unleashed his political lightsaber in a new governor's race ad against state Sen. Wendy Davis (D).

Abbott's Thursday attack has a Star Wars theme, accusing Davis of being someone who will "threaten gun rights... promote higher taxes... And remove freedom from the galaxy..." - Huffington Post, 5/22/14

Yeah, Abbott would rather go after Davis than be a man and debate her:

Democratic Sen. Wendy Davis on Tuesday proposed a series of six debates with Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott in their race for governor.

Her proposal came after Abbott earlier said he had accepted two invitations for debates in McAllen in September and in Dallas in October.

Davis envisions a series of debates from July through October in the Rio Grande Valley, Dallas-Fort Worth, San Antonio, El Paso, Houston and Lubbock.

In a letter to Abbott dated Tuesday, she said she would like at least two of them to be issue-specific debates focused on education and economic opportunity.

Davis proposed at least two 90-minute town-hall formats "with a technology partner and social media engagement;" at least one community college with a local media partner "on a weekend so parents can attend;" and at least one English-Spanish simulcast.

Abbott on Monday said he had accepted a Sept. 19 debate invitation to be hosted by the McAllen Monitor in partnership with KGBT-TV Action 4 News and KTLM Telemundo 40. Davis on Tuesday said her "strong preference" is that the Valley debate be hosted by those media outlets in July as the first debate. - Houston Chronicle, 5/20/14

But Davis is calling out Abbott's cowardice:

"Debates are a rare opportunity for Texas's communities to hear from the people who want their trust and their vote, and every Texan should get that opportunity. That's why I proposed debates in six cities that reflect our state's diverse communities and perspectives.

So make no mistake: Greg Abbott didn't just say no to debates; he said no to communities. He said no to the people of Lubbock, to the people of El Paso, to the people of San Antonio and Houston. These communities are crucial to the success of our state. Every voice deserves to be heard.

But, Dallas, Greg Abbott said no. Well actually that's not true, Greg Abbott's campaign said no.

He's hiding. He's too afraid to speak for himself, and he's clearly too afraid to explain his record to Texans. But given his record, that shouldn't be a surprise.

Because in a debate, he'd have to defend the fact that he served on the oversight committee at our Cancer Prevention and Research Institute and let his donors pilfer tens of millions in taxpayer dollars from cancer patients.

He'd have to defend the fact that his donors in the payday lending industry were targeting military personnel with outrageous payday loans. But instead of stopping them, he gave them a green light to rack up rates, and they returned the favor. Payday lenders have given Greg Abbott nearly $200,000 in campaign cash.

And even after seeing the fallout from his actions, he still chooses to defend the same practices that victimized service members and their families.

In a debate, he'd have to defend the fact that he's fighting against nearly 600 Texas school districts in court - that he's defending overcrowded classrooms, teacher layoffs and public school closings.

He'd have to defend the fact that he pays some of the women in his office $6,000 less than he pays the men, despite the fact that they do the same work.

He'd have to defend the fact that he said he would veto an equal pay for equal work bill, even though Texas women earn, on average, 79 cents for every dollar a man makes.

Now, if Texas had an equal pay law, the women in his office would be able to fight back against him, and he knows it.

And at the base of it all, Greg Abbott would have to defend his record of fighting against hardworking Texans.

He's not working for women. He's not working for cancer patients. He's not working for our military families. He's not working for our students. Texas, Greg Abbott is an insider, and he's just not working for you.

So, who's he working for? Well, his record tells us that he's favoring special interests. But they can't save him, and they definitely can't debate for him.

So he needs to act like a Texan and debate me - and not just here in Dallas and in the Valley but in Houston, El Paso, San Antonio and Lubbock because we face a very real and very personal choice in this election.

And it's not just a choice between two different paths; it's a choice between two different visions, and people deserve to see them side by side."

I haven't given up on this race and neither should you.  Click here to get involved and donate to Davis' campaign:

Originally posted to pdc on Thu May 22, 2014 at 04:30 PM PDT.

Also republished by The Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party, TexKos-Messing with Texas with Nothing but Love for Texans, Houston Area Kossacks, Turning Texas: Election Digest, and This Week in the War on Women.

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