Campaigning in Dallas Tuesday, Democratic gubernatorial candidate State Sen. Wendy Davis called on Republican nominee Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott to disavow remarks made by a GOP consultant on Lone Star Politics, the weekly show produced by NBC 5 and The Dallas Morning News.
During a discussion of Abbott’s position on abortion, Matt Mackowiak referred to women seeking abortions in cases of rape and incest as, "minor issues that are one percent or two percent the problem."
Here is a partial transcript of Mackowiak's exchange with Democratic strategist Matt Angle:
Mackowiak: "Texas is a pro-life state. We can get into minor issues that are one percent or two percent the problem. But ultimately Texas is a strong pro-life state. Abbott would love to fight this campaign on that issue alone from here on out but Wendy knows that's not strategically wise."
Angle: "That's the first time I've heard rape or incest called a 'minor issue.'"
Mackowiak: "It's minor in terms of the percentage of cases. That's all I'm saying."
Angle: "A victim of rape or incest is not a minor problem."
After speaking to a gathering of Annie's List in Dallas Tuesday, Davis challenged Abbott to repudiate Mackowiak's statements.
"I am calling on them to disavow those statements and to show their respect for women in this state who have undergone the horrific and heinous crimes of rape and incest," the Fort Worth Democrat said. "He (Mackowiak) has been a surrogate voice for Greg Abbott and the Greg Abbott campaign. And I think that most telling is the fact that Greg Abbott has not come forward to disavow Matt Mackowiak's characterization of women who've been victimized in rape and in cases of incest as though somehow they've suffered a minor issue," said Davis.
Davis added, "If I disagreed with something that a supporter said I would be quick to make a public statement about that."
The Abbott campaign did not respond on the record to NBC 5's phone calls or emails seeking comment.
Meanwhile, Mackowiak released the following statement Tuesday:
"I am neither an 'Abbott strategist' nor an 'Abbott surrogate' and have never claimed to be, so the Davis campaign's repeated claims of this are false. To the extent that the Davis campaign has intentionally mislead voters about what I said and offended people, I regret that. The Davis campaign has intentionally mischaracterized what I said in a desperate attempt to raise money, while selfishly trivializing domestic violence and sexual assault victims by using them to score cheap political points. The Davis campaign has now relentlessly targeted a private citizen for two days, with thousands of emails, social media postings, online graphics, a speech and even a press conference demeaning me, based on several blatant falsehoods. It's time for this campaign for Governor to return to a discussion about the future of our great state."