(National Review) The Texas house of representatives voted on Saturday to impeach state attorney general Ken Paxton, temporarily removing him from office days after a Republican-led investigative committee voted unanimously to recommend his impeachment for several alleged abuses of office. He now faces a trial in the state senate.
The Texas house voted 121–23 to impeach the Republican attorney general after the committee filed 20 articles of impeachment against Paxton.
Texas has previously had only two impeachments under the constitution of 1876, including a governor and a district judge.
House Republicans had been investigating Paxton for months but publicly announced the probe only on Tuesday.
Paxton has faced FBI investigation into allegations that he used his office to help a donor.
He has admitted to violating state securities law in 2014 by not registering as an investment adviser while soliciting clients and was indicted the next year on felony securities charges by a grand jury near Dallas after being accused of defrauding investors in a tech startup. He has pleaded not guilty to two felony counts and has yet to stand trial.
Among his other alleged offenses was accepting $100,000 for a legal-defense fund from an executive whose company was under investigation by his office for Medicaid fraud. Paxton also hired a man to a high-ranking job in his office whose parent had donated $50,000 to the fund. The man was ultimately fired for showing child pornography in a meeting in an attempt to make a point.
Several of Paxton’s top aides — who later quit or were fired after reporting him to the FBI — came forward in 2020 to allege that the attorney general was abusing the power of his office to help Nate Paul, an Austin real-estate developer who made unproven claims about a conspiracy to steal $200 million of his properties. Paul has not been charged and has denied wrongdoing. Paxton also told staff members that he had an affair with a woman who worked for Paul.