Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) was acquitted of impeachment charges on Saturday, ending a months-long saga in Austin.
The impeachment was blasted by Paxton and his allies, including President Trump, as a vindictive witch hunt orchestrated by the Republican establishment of Texas and the Bush dynasty.
Paxton is popular among Trump supporters and has a reputation for aggressively combating progressive “woke” policies.
In May, he was charged by the Texas House of corruptly wielding his office to benefit a donor and political ally, Nate Paul.
The trial began in the Senate on September 5 and wrapped up this weekend with a dramatic vote. Paxton was acquitted of sixteen charges, while four other charges that had been held in abeyance were dropped.
In a statement teasing an upcoming interview with Tucker Carlson, Paxton said the “sham impeachment” was a joint effort between Democrats and liberal Republicans who wanted to stop his work as attorney general.
“I’ve said many times: Seek the truth! And that is what was accomplished,” Paxton said.
“Now that this shameful process is over, my work to defend our constitutional rights will resume. Thank you to everyone who has stood with us during this time.”
My statement on today’s Senate acquittal vote: pic.twitter.com/XZrbfEB5ny
— Attorney General Ken Paxton (@KenPaxtonTX) September 16, 2023
Trump, who supported Paxton throughout the impeachment, took credit for the acquittal, which he touted as a victory against the Bush dynasty that one controlled the GOP.
“Ken Paxton has been a great A.G. and now he can go back to work for the wonderful people of Texas,” Trump said. “It was my honor to have helped correct this injustice.”
The response was far different in the Texas House, led by Republican Speaker Dade Phelan, who blasted the acquittal as a preordained result.
“The inescapable conclusion is that today’s outcome appears to have been orchestrated from the start, cheating the people of Texas of justice,” Phelan said.
The Texas Democrats also lamented Paxton’s acquittal and reinstatement as the result of a rigged proceeding.
“It’s clear that the fix was in from the beginning, and that as long as Republicans control our government, elected officials won’t face consequences for ethical or criminal offenses.”
Lt. Governor Dan Patrick, who presided over the trial, has requested an audit to determine the cost of the whole process.
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Author: Matthew Boose
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