Texas Attorney General Won’t Testify at his Impeachment Trial

July 5, 2023

A lawyer for suspended Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) said late Monday that his client would not testify at his upcoming impeachment trial in the state Senate.

The statement is an indication that Paxton would fight any efforts to compel his testimony. 

The GOP-led state House voted in May to impeach Paxton and suspend him pending trial after its Investigative Committee unanimously ruled to issue 20 articles of impeachment against the Attorney General.

The issuance of the articles, which include bribery, unfitness for office, disregard of official duty and abuse of public trust, comes as Paxton is under an FBI investigation for corruption. He is accused of using his office to assist a donor.

He is accused of using his office to assist a donor. Real estate execute Nate Paul was arrested and booked in June in Austin on an undisclosed felony charge.

Paxton’s wife, Angela Paxton (R) is a state senator. The GOP-controlled state Senate has barred her from from voting in the impeachment trial of her husband, which is scheduled to begin on September 5.

Even with the state Senate forcing his wife’s recusal last month, Ken Paxton still has numerous allies among the remaining 30 Senators who will vote on whether to convict him. 

For example, the state Senate is led by Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, a Republican who, like Paxton, closely links himself with former President Trump. The pair have driven a right-wing policy push for the last decade. 

However, Patrick has insisted, “The citizens of Texas can count on the Senate of Texas to have a fair and just trial.” 

Along with the state legislators’ investigation, Paxton is also facing a criminal trial for alleged securities fraud. 

In June, a judge ruled that trial be moved to Houston from his hometown near Dallas, a victory for the prosecution. If convicted of the securities fraud charges, Paxton faces up to 99 years in prison.

Only twice before in Texas’ history has its state House impeached a sitting official: Gov. James Ferguson (D) in 1917 and state Judge O.P. Carrillo in 1975.

Read more exclusive news from Political IQ.

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