State Senator Wendy Davis' campaign has experienced a couple of hiccups in recent weeks.
Her attack on rival Greg Abbott for being in the pocket of payday lenders backfired after her campaign grossly miscalculated the industry's contributions and neglected to mention that she had previously voted for the payday lending regulator she was now blasting her rival for supporting. Similarly, when she proposed a list of expensive-seeming education proposals but offered no suggestion of how they would be paid for, political watchers questioned whether that was wise.
In the context of a big statewide campaign, such missteps are of vanishing significance. But they should be enough to convince Davis that her campaign needs to do a better job of projecting competence.
Instead, she goes out and endorses David Alameel.
Alameel, who has amassed a reported personal fortune of more than $50 million as the founder of the Jefferson Dental Clinic chain, is one of five Democrats running for John Cornyn's U.S. Senate seat.
He doesn't stand a chance.
It's not merely that Democrats haven't won a statewide race in Texas for two decades or that Cornyn enjoys a hefty advantage in fundraising and name recognition. It's that Alameel is terrible at electoral politics.
For proof, rewind to the 2012 Democratic primary for the U.S. House seat now occupied by Marc Veasey. In a field of long-shots and also-rans, Alameel quickly established himself as the Don Quixote of the race, delusionally tilting at the windmill of elected office.
He won 11 percent of the vote and finished fourth in the race, which isn't so terrible in a field of 11 candidates until you remember that he spent $4.5 million (about $2,200 per vote) and plastered his face on what seemed like every billboard in North Texas. At that rate, Alameel would need to spend about a billion dollars to best the 4,337,469 votes Cornyn won in the 2008 general election.
He also has a history of donating money to Republican candidates, including Cornyn.
So why is Davis endorsing Alameel? "Dr. Alameel is an astute and successful business leader who shares my commitment to creating good paying jobs, improving education for all our children and protecting the retirement our seniors have worked hard for and earned," she announced in a statement.
Probably true, but that's hardly reason enough to tie tie yourself to a sinking ship -- unless, of course, that ship is filled with cash.
Send your story tips to the author, Eric Nicholson.