Texas House sets impeachment vote of AG Ken Paxton for Saturday
The Texas state House of Representatives set the date for an impeachment vote against state Attorney General Ken Paxton for Saturday. If the vote passes, Paxton would immediately be removed from office.
The impeachment vote is currently scheduled for Saturday afternoon, and it comes after a House committee introduced 20 articles of impeachment against Paxton, who is accused of multiple state and federal crimes. The articles come after the committee conducted a thorough but secret investigation into Paxton.
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Paxton, who has denied any wrongdoing, called for peaceful protests ahead of the vote, claiming state lawmakers were ignoring the will of the voters who reelected Paxton in November. The vote needs a two-thirds majority to pass.
“They are determined to ignore the law,” Paxton said at a press conference on Friday. “They have denied me the opportunity to present the evidence which contradicts their politically motivated narrative, and they are showcasing their absolute contempt for the electoral process.”
If the vote passes in the House, Paxton will need to step down until he is tried in the state Senate.
The state’s attorney general has been accused of multiple crimes, including felonies, such as illegal conduct by abusing his office powers through bribery, improper influence, and creating a culture of fear and retaliation, according to the Associated Press.
Paxton’s criminal charges date back to 2015. Texas prosecutors started to build their case against Paxton after documents were released showing he was not registered with the state board after providing legal services in Texas. A trial date was set for 2017, but the day in court has yet to happen after multiple delays.
Paxton is also accused of not paying any of his $3.3 million ordered payout for a lawsuit settlement from former aides who accused him of retaliation in 2020.
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The state’s top attorney’s impeachment hearing comes shortly after Paxton demanded the resignation of Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan (R) earlier this week. Paxton’s demands came after the speaker appeared to lead the statehouse in session while intoxicated.
“After much consideration, it is with profound disappointment that I call on Speaker Dade Phelan to resign at the end of this legislative session,” Paxton said in a statement. “Texans were dismayed to witness his performance presiding over the Texas House in a state of apparent debilitating intoxication.”