Abbott supporters offered subsidized trips to Rio Grande Valley

A "breaking news" tweet from Zac Petkanas, spokesman for the Wendy Davis gubernatorial campaign, led us to confirm Greg Abbott is investing in bringing supporters to the Rio Grande Valley as he and Davis debate there this week, though we doubt the Abbott camp would use the verb "resorted" to describe these plans.

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Asked for the goods on his tweet, Petkanas emailed us a web link to what he called the "back and forth" between a San Antonio-based Abbott supporter and someone asking how to pitch in. According to the web page, the Abbott supporter emailed: "We are leaving from San Antonio Friday, September 19 at 10:30 am for the valley. The campaign is providing transportation and lodging. We are attending the debate watch party on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday we will be block walking and then coming home on Sunday! We'd love to have you come with us! We are also doing some block walking on September 6th here in San Antonio and phone banking daily if you'd like to attend!"

On behalf of Abbott’s campaign, spokeswoman Amelia Chasse told us by email that Abbott’s campaign workers are inviting all his "supporters and volunteers to attend our ‘Unidos en el Valle’ weekend of events." She said the campaign is "helping to defray transportation and lodging costs for volunteers."

Chasse said Abbott, the state attorney general and Republican nominee for governor, plans to campaign across the valley on Saturday, attending block walk kick-offs in Hidalgo County and Cameron County and hosting an evening pachanga in Mission. Davis, the Democratic nominee and a Fort Worth state senator, is scheduled to do a public interview at the Texas Tribune Festival in Austin the same afternoon.

davistribfest2014.JPGThe debate, to be livestreamed and aired on some Texas TV stations, is set for 6 p.m. Friday.