Austin, Texas — Republican-led Texas House of Representatives to introduce impeachment resolution on Saturday Attorney General Ken Paxtonaccording to a committee memo on Thursday, filed 20 articles of impeachment against him.
Deliberations on the impeachment motion will begin at 2:00 p.m. ET, according to the House Committee of Inquiry. The committee is proposing to add 40 minutes of opening arguments and 20 minutes of closing statements to the four hours of debate, split evenly between pro-impeachment and supporters.
A simple majority of the House of Representatives is required to impeach Paxton. Republicans hold a commanding 85-64 majority in the House, down from their dominance of more than 40 seats until 2017.
A House Inquiry Committee on Thursday recommended 20 articles of impeachment against Paxton, including charges of bribery, obstruction of justice and abuse of public trust. Paxton, who has been under investigation by the FBI for years for allegedly using his office to help donors, was separately indicted on securities fraud charges in 2015, the report said. CBS News Texas.
Paxton spoke to reporters on Friday but did not directly address the allegations against him. Rather, he accused state House Republicans of being “determined to ignore the law.” He also accused them of being “ready to sabotage what Joe Biden wanted to accomplish from his first day in office: my job as Texas Attorney General, our job.” bottom.
The investigation into Mr. Paxton was launched in March after asking the House to fund $3.3 million to settle a whistleblowing lawsuit against Mr. Paxton, according to a memo from Republican Rep. has begun.
Paxton is a staunch ally of former President Donald Trump. Lawsuit Seeking to Overturn Presidential Election in December 2020 The result is a major battleground state. dismissed by the Supreme Court.
paxton on thursday tweeted a statement The report accused the Commission of Inquiry of asking the Texas House of Representatives to “use baseless reports to overturn the results of a free and fair election.” The Attorney General’s chief litigator, Chris Hilton, said Thursday that state legislatures cannot proceed with impeachment over allegations that arose before the last election. The House Inquiry Committee said in a memo on Friday that this so-called “forgiveness principle” “does not apply to impeachment.”
Mr. Paxton won his third term in November by beating Democrat Rochelle Garza by nearly 10 points.
If the House votes to impeach Paxton, he will face trial in the Texas Senate. The House will appoint its own members as “impeachment administrators” to conduct trials in the Senate, according to the memo.
The 2023 Texas legislature ends on May 29, the day known as “Sign Die,” the day all bills must be put on the governor’s desk. Normally, only the governor can summon members to a special legislature. The Texas Constitution states in the Senate: The impeachment trial may continue even after the session ends.
Republicans have a 19-12 majority in the Senate, requiring a two-thirds majority to remove him from office. But according to the Texas Constitution, if Mr. Paxton is impeached, he will be immediately suspended pending a Senate trial.
The Senate has only expelled members twice: Governor James Ferguson in 1917 and District Judge OP Carrillo in 1975. Former State Rep. Sherry Greenberg, associate dean of the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin, called the impeachment “earthquake” on Friday.
“This really caused a wave,” Greenberg said. “Impeachment of civil servants is rare. I have only seen it a few times in the history of Texas.”
The impeachment recommendation against Paxton came just weeks after the House took an unusual step. Republican Rep. Bylan Slaton voted unanimously to expel him, quit a day ago. The same House commission of inquiry that investigated Mr. Paxton found that Mr. Paxton engaged in inappropriate sexual acts with a 19-year-old intern.