As expected, Texas State Senator Wendy Davis officially entered the race for governor Thursday.

“Texas is a place where we aim high and we take big risks,” the Fort Worth Democrat told supporters.

Davis says she plans to fight for middle-income families, health care and education.

“College is more expensive, the choices for working families are fewer, and far too many young people yearning to continue their own education journeys are turned down for grants and loans because state leaders have turned a deaf ear to their needs and blocked their path,” she said.

Davis rose to national fame after her 13-hour filibuster against new abortion rules in Texas.  The law eventually was passed.

Despite her star power, Davis still trails Republican Attorney General Greg Abbott by as much as eight percentage points.

Harvey Kronberg at the Quorum Report says either way, the race for governor keeps Davis in the spotlight.

“Frankly if she were to lose her Senate seat race, it would be hard to come back,” Kronberg tells KTRH News.  “If she were to score 47-percent in the gubernatorial race, that would be better than any Democrat since 1998.

Rice University's Mark Jones thinks the 2014 race really sets the tone for what's to come.

“If Wendy Davis crashes and burns, that would set back Democratic efforts to turn Texas blue by as long as 10 years,” he says.

For Davis to win or at least challenge Abbott, Jones says she needs votes from white suburban women and Hispanics.

“If she does well in this race, although not winning, she probably writes her ticket for 2018 which could determine if she wants to decide herself whether she wants to run for governor or U.S. Senate,” he says.