Sunday, April 19, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Wendy Davis’ choices her own

navarrette column sig

By
From page A7 | January 30, 2014 |

SAN DIEGO — Being a liberal means never having to be consistent.

Take the idea that women should make their own choices about family and career and it is no one else’s business what they choose to do.

That sounds good. I just can’t believe it’s coming from liberals who have never been particularly skilled at resisting the urge to criticize women over the choices they make – if those women are conservative Republicans.

In the 1992 presidential campaign, Hillary Clinton defended her choice to pursue a high-powered legal career by taking a swipe at the June Cleaver crowd. “I suppose I could have stayed home and baked cookies and had teas,” she said. “But what I decided to do was to fulfill my profession, which I entered before my husband was in public life.”

In 2008, CNN’s John Roberts asked correspondent Dana Bash if Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin shouldn’t be spending more time at home caring for a newborn son with Down syndrome instead of running on the Republican ticket? Bash called her colleague on the carpet for asking such a sexist question, one that would never be put to a man running for office.

Then in 2012, Democratic adviser Hilary Rosen went on the attack against Ann Romney, insisting that the wife of the 2012 presidential nominee – who kept up a home and raised five boys while her husband was building companies and amassing wealth – “never worked a day in her life.” President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama both condemned those condescending remarks.

So much for respecting women’s choices.

Yet, this kind of respect is exactly what some liberals are calling for in Texas, where Democrats are now circling the wagons around embattled gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis. They hope the state senator – who last year put on her sneakers and filibustered an anti-abortion bill in the Legislature – will help turn the red state blue.

A change of hue might be good for Texas. During the five years that I wrote for The Dallas Morning News, I saw numerous examples of bad government tied to the fact that Republicans controlled the governor’s mansion, every other statewide office, and the Legislature. There has to be competition in politics, or it’s a road map to irrelevance.

Yet, Davis might not be the strongest candidate to put Texas in the Democratic column. Texans value authenticity, and Davis might not live up to her campaign literature. The narrative of her life story that her handlers peddle to reporters and campaign donors contains several inaccuracies.

The legend goes that Davis was a divorced teenage mother living in a trailer who worked her way through college and on to Harvard Law School through an inspiring combination of smarts and grit. Davis has raised millions of dollars on the strength of that biography, which she repeats in speeches.

She even got the attention of a book publisher who wants her to write her life story.

Good for her. But which version will she write?

According to a recent article in The Dallas Morning News, Davis was 21 and out of her teens when she divorced. Once she separated, she lived for a few months in a mobile home owned by her family before moving with her daughter into an apartment. As for working her way through Harvard, it was Davis’ second husband – Jeff Davis, with whom she had a second child – who footed much of the bill for tuition by, among other things, cashing in his 401(k). Her now ex-husband even took care of her two daughters in Texas while she attended law school more than 1,200 miles away.

It’s that last part that gets us back to the touchy subject of women and choices. How is this for a biography? Davis chose attending a faraway law school over raising her kids. This won’t go over well with some Texans, who just might conclude that motherhood isn’t her strong suit and that ambition got the better of her. This might make her less likable.

Davis’ daughters, 25-year-old Dru and 31-year-old Amber, are trying to counter that impression. Both wrote open letters released by the Davis campaign in which they insisted that – as Dru put it – Davis “always shared equally in the care and custody of my sister and me.” Amber called “ludicrous” any suggestions to the contrary.

No matter who is correct, Davis’ defenders insist that she had every right to make the personal decisions she did, and that her critics need to back off.

That’s good advice. Let’s hope that liberals follow it the next time they feel the urge to criticize a woman on the right for the choices that she’s made.

Ruben Navarrette is a columnist for U-T San Diego. Reach him at [email protected]

Ruben Navarrette

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

.

Solano News

Tiny twins call Heather House their 1st home

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 38 Comments | Gallery

 
Solano ranks last in Bay Area for health

By Ryan McCarthy | From Page: A1, 2 Comments | Gallery

SID to consider water rate hikes

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A1

 
Waiting game: Woman, toddler hope for kidney transplants

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: C1, 2 Comments | Gallery

 
 
Healthier Living program begins mid-May

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A3

Bachelor party turns into community event

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3, 2 Comments | Gallery

 
Il Fiorello serves up chocolate desserts

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3 | Gallery

City announces Browns Valley Road closures

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A3

 
When to throw in the towel on sickly plants

By Karen Metz | From Page: C4

Coping with seasonal allergies

By Emerita Brigino-Buenaventura, M.d | From Page: C4

 
Church hosts health, wellness fair

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A5 | Gallery

Solano superhero back in school

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A5

 
Home, garden show offers something for everyone

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Weather for Sunday, April 19, 2015

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B6

 
Teen victim of Dixon shooting dies

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A7, 2 Comments

 
Land use, design, project synergy key to growth

By Brian Miller and Karl Dumas | From Page: B7

2 nations at center of market drop

By Bud Stevenson | From Page: B7

 
Vanden robotics team ready to compete in world championships

By Bill Hicks | From Page: A7 | Gallery

Fairfield hotel gets major renovation

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: April 17, 2015

By Glen Faison | From Page: A9

Suisun City police log: April 17, 2015

By Glen Faison | From Page: A9

 
Commissary-Exchange pairing gains steam

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

Airmen with county ties complete training

By Nick DeCicco | From Page: B10

 
.

US / World

Time plus distance help some Oklahoma City victims move on

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
San Francisco marks anniversary of 1906 earthquake

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Scarlett O’Hara outfit fetches $137,000 at auction

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Turin Shroud goes back on display for faithful and curious

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Caged puppies on car roof trigger dozens of 911 calls

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

French replica of revolutionary frigate sets sail for Boston

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11

 
Islamic State blamed for Afghan suicide bombing killing 35

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

.

Opinion

 
Sound off for April 19, 2015

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8, 2 Comments

 
Talk about corruption

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 7 Comments

 
Justice not served

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 23 Comments

Clinton should spruce up a bit

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A8, 17 Comments

 
.

Living

Community Calendar: April 19, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in history: Sunday, April 19, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Vatican unexpectedly ends crackdown of US nun group

By The Associated Press | From Page: C3

Horoscopes: April 19, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: C4

 
Wife needs to decide if she can tolerate husband’s binge drinking

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: C4

.

Entertainment

PUBLISHERS WEEKLY BEST-SELLERS

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
Anna Kendrick has book of essays coming out in 2016

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

Phil Klay, Leslie Jamison among PEN award nominees

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2

 
.

Sports

Crawford, Heston lead Giants to win

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Curry scores 34, Warriors beat Pelicans 106-99 in Game 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Reddick’s 3-run homer sends A’s to 5-0 victory over Royals

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Cal defense shines for a change at scripted spring game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Free agent center Wisniewski signs 1-year deal with Jaguars

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Pete Rose hired by Fox as special guest studio analyst

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Marcotte, Ryan win US cycling Criterium championships

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Independent league experiments with 3-ball walks

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Merritt maintains edge through 3 rounds at RBC Heritage

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

Jones throws 2 TDs, wins challenge at Ohio State spring game

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
Serena Williams gets a rare test from Giorgi but holds on

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Tom Watson: Next Masters might be his last

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Harden has 24 points, Rockets beat Mavs 118-108 in Game 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

Pierce leads Wizards past Raptors in OT in Game 1

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
As Spurs know, international players can impact NBA playoffs

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3 | Gallery

Rose scores 23, Bulls beat Bucks 103-91

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Hometown report: Little League baseball

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B4

Hometown report: Youth track

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B4

 
Kenseth content in car and not contemplating retirement

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4 | Gallery

Logano leads flag-to-flag to win Xfinity race at Bristol

By The Associated Press | From Page: B4 | Gallery

 
This date in sports history for April 19

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

 
.

Business

Using a prepaid card? Avoid getting socked with fees

By The Washington Post | From Page: B7

 
Recalls this week: blowers, bike hooks, mattresses, toys

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

This year’s fight for the tech industry: Patent trolls

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
IMS: US prescription drug spending jumped 13 percent in 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9

Fast-growing Asian aviation confronts safety challenges

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9 | Gallery

 
 
.

Obituaries

Frances Bayona Lozano

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Robert Larkin

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Barbara Medders

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Carrol “Carl” Gordon Parker

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

John Thompson

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Allen Ellsworth Dolby Sr.

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

Carole Anspach

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Sterling Jenkins

By Nancy Green | From Page: A5

Dennis Burkhart von Ting

By Nancy Green | From Page: A5

 
.

Comics