Bum Steer: Wendy Davis Featured Ranchers in Her First Ad, but Voted Against Protecting Ranchers from Cattle Thieves

Two days ago, Texas state Sen. Wendy Davis (D-Ft Worth) rolled out her first video in support of her run for governor. That video featured no discussion of the issue that brought her to prominence — defending late-term abortion in clinics that need not meet ordinary ambulatory surgical clinic standards. Her video did feature much generic stock footage, including footage of iconic Texas imagery.


Images like this one:



And this one:



And this one:


All of these are screen shots from Davis’ video.

You get the picture: Davis’ campaign sought to use their first video to portray the urban liberal as someone who understands rural life and supports Texas’ ranches, which remain a key, $15 billion, industry in the state.

But when the cow chips were down in the Texas Senate, Sen. Davis did not support a law intended to secure Texas’ cattle ranchers’ property.

In the 81st legislative session, Davis was in the Senate as it considered SB 1163. That bill proposed making “theft of cattle, horses, exotic livestock or fowl, sheep, swine, or goats a felony of the third degree if the aggregate value of the stolen livestock is less than $100,000, regardless of the number of head stolen.”

It was an uncontroversial bill proposed by the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association to help protect Texas ranchers from a spike in livestock theft. Texas’ laws at the time were more lenient on thieves than the laws in neighboring states.


SB 1163 passed the Texas Senate overwhelmingly in May 2009 and Gov. Rick Perry signed it into law. Just two senators voted against it.

One of those two was Wendy Davis.

Perhaps the senator who wants to be governor can explain her vote to protect cattle thieves to the state’s ranchers, landowners and livestock raisers.




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