16 September 2023


Not only did the Texas Senate not convict Attorney General Ken Paxton after he was impeached, they did not get a simple majority on any of these charges.

This guy has been blatantly corrupt for at least a decade, and he will go back to being the chief law enforcement officer in Texas.

In a historic vote that will have long-term implications for the Texas GOP, state senators serving as jurors in Ken Paxton’s impeachment trial acquitted the attorney general on allegations of taking bribes and using his office to help an Austin businessman, resolving the first of several legal proceedings Paxton is facing.

The verdict, reached Saturday after a two-week trial in the Texas Senate, clears the way for Paxton, a three-term Republican, to return to the post he has used to advance an ultraconservative agenda that has brought national acclaim from far-right Republicans.


Paxton, first elected as attorney general in 2014, had been suspended without pay since May 27, when in the final days of the legislative session the Texas House voted overwhelmingly to advance 20 impeachment articles after a monthslong secret investigation. Sixteen of the articles, those tried in the Senate, involved bribery and misuse of office in Paxton’s relationship with a campaign donor, prominent Austin real estate developer Nate Paul.


Many of the allegations against Paxton have been public since 2020 when eight former deputies in his office made a complaint against him to the FBI. Four of those aides then filed a wrongful termination lawsuit against the agency, prompting the House investigation this year into a request by Paxton for the Legislature to fund a $3.3 million settlement to resolve the lawsuit.

The trial dripped of political influence, with Paxton’s supporters launching an online campaign against two unlikely allies they deem responsible: Democrats and flimsy conservatives labeled RINOs — Republicans in name only. In the lead up to the trial, Defend Texas Liberty, an ultraconservative political action committee, contributed $3 million to the campaign of Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, the trial’s judge. The group also promised political retaliation against House members who voted for impeachment.


Arguably, the most serious pending action against Paxton is an ongoing federal investigation into his connection to Paul. In August, the American-Statesman reported that federal prosecutors in San Antonio seated a grand jury to consider such evidence. During the impeachment trial, Paxton’s former chief of staff, Missy Cary, testified that she provided testimony to a federal grand jury in 2021.

In a separate case, a judge in Houston overseeing Paxton’s 8-year-old felony securities fraud indictment recently told his lawyers and prosecutors to be ready for trial in February. That case, which accuses Paxton of procuring investments in a company without disclosing he was being paid to do so, is the basis of four impeachment articles that the Senate opted to hold in abeyance and address at a later time.

Paxton also faces two complaints with the Texas State Bar — one connected to the impeachment and the other for citing false evidence in challenging the results of the 2020 presidential election in four battleground states.

Here's hoping that the Feds take him down, because I have no confidence whatsoever in the ability of Texas law enforcement to do so.

Seriously, we need to give Texas back to Mexico.


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