Wendy Davis | Texas Public Radio

Wendy Davis

Ryan Loyd / TPR News

A new poll shows approval ratings for Republicans in Congress have dropped to a record low, but will it affect statewide elections for people like Democrat Wendy Davis?

The Associated Press survey shows over 62 percent of those polled believe Republicans in Congress are solely to blame for the government shutdown that ended last Thursday.

Ryan Loyd / TPR News

Democratic Gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis is headed to Washington, D.C., next week to raise some national campaign cash.

The event is being hosted by two groups that helped launch Davis, Battleground Texas and The Lone Star Project.

"It’s a gathering of Texans who are in D.C.," said The Lone Star Project’s Matt Angle. "A lot of them work in and around the capitol but their hearts and many cases their votes are still in Texas."

The event is also not limited to just Texans or their money.

In 2014, Texas voters might just see something they haven't experienced in two decades — a competitive race for governor.

Current Republican Gov. Rick Perry isn't running for re-election, so it's an open race, with new faces and new optimism for Texas Democrats.

Earlier this year, the Democrats were once again facing the prospect of scrambling to find someone to run as their candidate. Then, on June 25, state Sen. Wendy Davis came to the Capitol in Austin wearing running shoes and ready to block a restrictive abortion bill.

Ryan Loyd / TPR News

Wendy Davis, the Texas senator who gained national attention with her filibuster against restrictive abortion laws, stopped in San Antonio just days after announcing her bid for governor.

And it may be no surprise that the Alamo City is on her list.

"San Antonio, of course, has an incredible story to tell about how much it values education, how much it values public-private partnerships that keep our economy strong," Davis said. "It's a shining example of what we want to see happening all over the state of Texas and it's one of the reasons that I'm running for governor."

Wendy Davis for Governor

Wendy Davis’ campaign brought in over $500,000 in contributions in less than 24 hours after her announcement that she would run for governor and the Democrat from Fort Worth has now launched her first campaign video.

"A Texas Story" starts with a biography of Davis’ life and features her daughter Amber, who details her mother’s humble beginnings.

Chris Eudaily | Texas Public Radio

In order for Wendy Davis to win the governor's office in 2014, one of the keys for her campaign will be mobilizing the Latino vote, which could be hard to do.

SMU Political Science Professor Mathew Wilson said one of the biggest challenges for Davis in the race for governor is that the 2014 election is not a presidential election year, meaning turnout will be low in a group of voters with an already low turnout at the ballot box.

Flickr user Adam Fagen (afagen) / cc

Texas Matters: The players are now set for the Texas governors race in 2014, and the players seem to be digging even deeper trenches in Washington, D.C. Who will be victorious in these battles of political wit (and values)? Also on this show: Gun rights advocates are holding an (armed) rally at the Alamo this weekend, and a high school senior in Amarillo shocks her entire school in the name of journalism.

David Martin Davies / TPR News

 With little surprise but abounding excitement state Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, has announced her bid to run in the 2014 governor’s race.   

It was a 13-hour filibuster Davis into the national spotlight, but that was not the message she had for the crowd of almost 2,000 supporters.

Update: Our reporting partners at the Texas Tribune have a recap of Davis' announcement:  

Davis promised to be an advocate for those who feel they no longer have a voice in the halls of the Texas Capitol, to fight for more education dollars and to take on Republicans leaders who she said are listening to their campaign contributors instead of average Texans.
 
"In Austin today, our current leadership thinks promises are just something you make to the people who write big checks," she said, according to remarks distributed before she delivered them. "But the promise I’m talking about is bigger than that. It’s the promise of a better tomorrow for everyone. Texas deserves a leader who will protect this promise. Texas deserves a leader who will keep it."

It’s a long campaign ahead. Republican opponent Greg Abbott has a head-start in fundraising; the Davis campaign is said to need to raise about $40 million to be competitive.

Senator Wendy R. Davis / Facebook

State Sen. Wendy Davis, D-Fort Worth, is now Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis as she confirmed speculation that she will run for governor in 2014.

Battleground Texas, one of Davis' strongest support groups is playing host to Davis announcement watch parties all across the state.

"We’re holding watch parties around the state and in 40 locations so that folks that can’t make to the even in the Dallas-Fort Worth area can have a chance to watch Wendy’s announcement live," said Battleground Texas’ Ellis Brockman.

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