The Texas state House of Representatives filed articles of impeachment Thursday against Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. The articles alleges Paxton has committed 20 counts of criminal misconduct since he assumed office in 2015.
One of the instance of misconduct alleged in the articles of impeachment is that Paxton directed employees in his office to “reverse their legal conclusions” regarding the foreclosure sale of properties for the benefit of Nate Paul, an Austin, Texas real estate developer. Paxton allegedly directed Texas prosecutor Brandon Cammack to “conduct an investigation into a baseless complaint,” during which Cammack issued more than 30 grand jury subpoenas. The articles of impeachment say that these subpoenas were “in an effort to benefit Nate Paul or Paul’s business entities.”
The articles also contain allegations that Paxton fired whistleblowers, directed investigations into whistleblowers and engaged in campaigns to damage the whistleblowers’ professional reputations. The articles further alleged that Paxton directed employees to create reports containing false statements in Paxton’s defense. Paxton then entered into settlement agreements with these whistleblowers through public funds–those settlements delayed criminal investigations into Paxton.
The 20-count articles of impeachment also allege violations of Texas state securities laws and that Paxton made false statements in a personal financial statements.
Paxton has had a national presence since he sued four states in 2020 to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election. The suit was later dismissed by the US Supreme Court. Paxton also allegedly used his position to obstruct a state securities fraud investigation which began in 2015.
In Texas, an official impeached by the state House of Representatives is suspended from office, pending the state Senate trial.