Texas Senator Wendy Davis, who became a media celebrity when she staged a filibuster this week, is poised to become America’s next political sensation.
The media love to discover, nurture and build up a relative unknown. They have been working hard to tell Davis’ story. The media have one preoccupation now:
Can Davis, 50, rise to the heights of President Barack Obama — someone in politics who was largely unknown until the media thrust the individual into the spotligh and possessed the smarts and toughness to seize the moment and capitalize fully on a once-in-a-lifetimne opportunity?
For Davis, this was a perfect storm, matching an individual with a ready-made story for the media to embrace. Her filibuster led to the defeat of a bill that would have shut down most of the abortion clinics in the state. She appeared equal parts bright, self-aware, driven, resolute, sincere and telegenic.
As the Fort Worth Star-Telegram noted:
“She continued to be a social media sensation with soaring numbers of Twitter followers — topping 93,000 as of 9 p.m. Wednesday, up from 1,200 the day before the filibuster. She appeared on CNN and was bombarded with other media interview requests. Texas Monthly declared her to be potentially the most powerful Texas Democrat since Ann Richards.”
Davis was a single mother who struggled to go back to school and ended up as the valedictorian at Texas Christian University, then an honors graduate at Harvard Law School.
It will be fascinating to see how long the honeymoon will last for Davis, who clearly has the charisma and intelligence to take full advantage of her overnight celebrity status. The Democratic Party will notice, too.
As President Obama well knows, the nation loves — adores — the story of a longshot who achieves something remarkable.
We in the media love it, too. Just ask Ms. Davis.