CNN | Houston Democratic Mayor Annise Parker is pulling hard for state Senator Wendy Davis for Texas governor, but acknowledges it is still a “red state” and her fellow Democrat has a tough fight ahead of her.
Appearing in Washington this week, Parker expressed strong support for Davis, saying “it is possible” for her to win. “I’m going to do whatever I can to help her do that, and as the Republican party in Texas turns more and more and more to the right, at some point the trend lines are going to cross,” she added.
But she also told the Dallas Morning News in an interview before her appearance at the National Press Club on Tuesday that Parker faces tough odds.
“But it’s still 54-46, or about that, and that’s what Texas has been for a long time. It’s an uphill battle,” Parker told the newspaper.
Davis and Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott, a Republican, are the frontrunners in their respective primaries for governor.
They hope to succeed Republican Gov. Rick Perry, who has said he will not seek a fourth term. No Democrat has won the state’s highest office since Ann Richards in 1990.
Determined and openly gay, Parker is backing some controversial agendas Texas, including: health benefits for same sex couples and immigration reform.
Citing a June Supreme Court ruling that was a victory for same-sex marriage, Parker recently announced that Houston would offer health and life insurance benefits to “legally married couples,” including same-sex couples.
A member of President Barack Obama’s Task Force on Climate Preparedness and Resilience, Parker also said “immigration reform” is a primary issue she would like to see resolved before the 2014 election.
According to Parker one out of five Houstonians is foreign born and much of that global aspect is driven by the city’s international oil and gas industry.
“It is an economic imperative, particularly in border states and border cities for comprehensive immigration reform with a path to citizenship for these people who are living in our communities and are building our economies today,” she said.
As to her future, Parker said she has no political plans, yet. But she would have to think “long and hard about anything I want to do to stay in politics because there is no better political job in America than to be a big city mayor.”