Sometimes in Texas it really is all about football. Even in politics.
After Democratic gubernatorial candidate Wendy Davis went on the sports station KTCK/1310 “The Ticket” on Wednesday morning, her Republican opponent, Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, wanted to point out just one thing: The Fort Worth state senator may not be a faithful Dallas Cowboys football fan.
Abbott’s gubernatorial campaign sent out an email after the morning show noting that Davis said on air that she has been a longtime supporter of the Cowboys.
“I grew up cheering for the Cowboys and I haven’t stopped ever since,” Davis said on the show. “And I’ll be cheering for them again this year.”
But Abbott’s campaign questioned her football loyalties, pointing to a Vogue interview last year with one of Davis’s daughters who said she and her mother are both “big” fans of the Patriots. And they noted that Davis once posted “Go Pats!” on Facebook.
On the eve of the official kickoff of the NFL season, some political analysts suggest the issue isn’t truly a fumble.
“There are more serious issues the candidates need to focus on,” said Cal Jillson, a political science professor at Southern Methodist University in Dallas.
The Davis campaign said this hoopla is much ado about nothing — and she’s not flip-flopping on her football loyalties.
“Wendy Davis has two words: Go Cowboys,” spokesman Zac Petkanas said.
After all, just earlier this year, former Dallas Cowboys running back Emmitt Smith donated $10,000 to the Texas Victory Committee, which is a joint effort supporting both Davis’ gubernatorial bid and Battleground Texas, an effort to boost Democratic turnout at the polls.
Cowboys owner Jerry Jones was in the limelight Wednesday afternoon, making a stop at the Texas Capitol to talk about a Dallas Cowboys scratch-off game that gives players a chance to attend Cowboys training camp.
When Abbott’s staff was asked about the AG’s own football team preference, they had one reply.
“Having spent considerable time living in both markets, he has an affinity for both teams,” said Matt Hirsch, Abbott’s campaign spokesman. “But having grown up in the shadows of the Cotton Bowl when the Cowboys played at that stadium, he remains a diehard fan.
“Either way, he’s no fan of liberal New England politics or their football team.”