A unique Texas legal rule lets the attorney general’s office supersede some judges’ orders
Lawyers criticize a provision they say erodes the separation of powers between Texas’ executive branch and its courts. It’s been used repeatedly this year as Texans try to block new state laws from going into effect
Ken Paxton emerges victorious from yet another career scandal
It marked a screaming milestone in a two-decade political career that has seen Paxton harness the state’s increasingly conservative politics — and later the rise of Donald Trump — to stay in power longer than his vulnerabilities would suggest.
Ken Paxton’s lawyer attacks allegation that home renovation was a bribe
Drew Wicker, Paxton’s former personal assistant, testified at Paxton’s impeachment trial that his boss used four cell phones and ditched his security to meet with Nate Paul. But Wicker also provided Paxton’s lawyer with a chance to attack a central bribery allegation.
Paxton empathized with Nate Paul’s distrust of law enforcement because of his own indictment, whistleblower testifies
Mark Penley testified that Paxton made numerous negative comments about the Texas Department of Public Safety because of his 2015 securities fraud case. “He doesn’t trust the [DPS] director and he feels like they ran a corrupt investigation on him,” he said.
Political warnings and accusations of misconduct: 6 main themes emerge in first week of Ken Paxton’s impeachment trial
The suspended attorney general’s lawyers focused on disloyalty and attacked evidence, while impeachment managers accused Paxton of excessive and obsessive misconduct. Neither side ignored the politics behind the case.
Paxton trial, Sept 8: AG’s former top cop says he warned Paxton about “criminal” Nate Paul
The former top cop for the attorney general’s office testified that complying with real estate investor Nate Paul’s requests would have amounted to criminal activity. Defense attorneys also questioned whistleblowers about their group texts.
Paxton trial, Sept. 7: During new testimony, former AG deputy tears up responding to “rogue” allegations
Former attorney general officials testified that Ken Paxton pushed to release confidential FBI records to friend and donor Nate Paul. They also denied defense attorneys’ assertions that they staged a “mutiny.”
Paxton trial, Sept. 6: Witnesses claim AG was fixated on Nate Paul
On the second day of the impeachment trial, former officials in the attorney general’s office say Ken Paxton’s relationship with real estate investor Nate Paul raised alarms. Defense attorney accused the witnesses of “staging a coup.”
Ken Paxton tried to hide his affair from his wife and voters. It may be his undoing.
The impeachment trial that starts Tuesday is expected to center on Paxton’s infidelity, and could air out the sordid details of the staunch, Christian conservative’s life as he sits just yards away from his wife, and her 30 Senate colleagues.
Here’s how Ken Paxton’s impeachment trial will operate
Under rules previously adopted by the Texas Senate, the trial will feature crucial votes on dismissing articles of impeachment as well as testimony under oath, private deliberations by senator-jurors and votes conducted without debate or discussion.
New accusations: Ken Paxton used burner phone, secret email account, fake Uber name to hide ties to Nate Paul
After Paxton’s lawyers sought to dismiss articles of impeachment as unsubstantiated, House managers responded by accusing the suspended attorney general of going to great lengths to cover up his relationship to the real estate investor.
A prison guard says she was forced to stay at her post during labor pains. Texas is fighting compensation for her stillbirth.
The seven-months-pregnant officer reported contraction-like pains at work, but said she wasn’t allowed to leave for hours. The anti-abortion state is fighting her lawsuit, in part by saying her fetus didn’t clearly have rights.
Part 2: Texas backlash to Obama fueled conservative drive to reinterpret U.S. Constitution
Barraging the Obama administration with lawsuits, the Texas attorney general’s office wasn’t just trying to block policies. It was injecting disruptive, overtly Christian legal philosophies into the mainstream, and grooming a generation of conservative legal warriors.
Part 1: In 1998, a legal revolution was quietly born in Texas. It would pull America’s courts rightward.
With his election as Texas attorney general, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn planted the seeds of conservatism. Gov. Greg Abbott used his tenure to cultivate them into an aggressive strain of right-wing activism aimed at driving the nation’s courts and laws to the right.
Part 3: Under Trump, Texas’ foot soldiers became federal judges, securing a conservative stronghold in the courts
A federal judiciary full of ideological allies is helping Texas block Democratic priorities and advance right-wing legal doctrines. But the bigger prize is conservative control of the rule of law itself.
Guatemala's corruption is thrust into international spotlight by the government's election meddling
The Guatemalan government’s clumsy interference with its presidential election has turned a global spotlight on a country whose struggles with deep corruption previously received little international notice.
Supreme Court rejects Texas effort to force Biden administration to change deportation policy
Texas and Louisiana sued after the Biden administration told immigration agents to focus on deporting undocumented immigrants who are convicted of felonies or pose a risk to public safety. The Supreme Court said states didn’t have any standing to sue.
Here are the top allegations that led to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton’s impeachment
In 2020, deputies in the attorney general’s office met with FBI agents to accuse their boss of misconduct. Their accusations would form the backbone of articles of impeachment against one of the state’s most powerful officials.
Gov. Greg Abbott can pick a fill-in attorney general. He’s so far been silent on impeachment.
Abbott himself is a former attorney general, preceding Paxton in the position. The governor has built deep connections in the conservative legal world and is known to lean on former aides for high-profile appointments.
Ken Paxton, Texas’ election denier-in-chief, closes in on third term
That Paxton is so close to securing his reelection this November as the state’s chief legal officer is raising alarms from election experts about the impact he could have on future contested elections, particularly if Donald Trump runs for president again in 2024.
Rochelle Garza is the Democrats’ best chance of winning statewide office in Texas, but she still faces an uphill battle
Garza remains the underdog, battling her own low name recognition and a fundraising disadvantage in an expensive statewide race that is already demanding considerable resources for travel and TV ads.
Texas AG says counties can spend COVID relief funds on extra pay for elected officials without public notice
The nonbinding legal opinion states local elected and appointed officials can receive up to $25,000 for work done during the COVID-19 pandemic on top of their regular salaries. Unlike other pay raises, these “premium pay” bonuses don’t need to be declared to the public ahead of time.
Texas suing USDA over requirement to add LGBTQ protections to nutrition programs’ nondiscrimination policies
The USDA Food and Nutrition Service announced in May that it would expand its definition of sexual discrimination to include gender identity and sexual orientation. Paxton and other attorneys general are suing in response.
Rochelle Garza secures Democratic nomination for Texas attorney general race in November
Garza, a civil rights attorney from Brownsville, beat former Galveston Mayor Joe Jaworski during Tuesday’s primary runoff and will face the Republican nominee in the general election. A Democrat has not led the Texas attorney general’s office since 1994.
With renewed attention on abortion, Democrats in attorney general runoff vow to defend reproductive rights
Rochelle Garza sued the Trump administration in 2017, seeking access to an abortion for an undocumented teenager. Joe Jaworski, a former Galveston mayor and a trial attorney for over three decades, presents himself as the more experienced candidate.
George P. Bush’s family name proves to be key obstacle in his race against Ken Paxton for attorney general
George P. Bush is running for attorney general as a Trump-supporting, hard-right social conservative. But voters associate his family name with the party’s moderate wing. That could hurt him in the Republican primary runoff.
Texas is quietly using redistricting lawsuits to launch a broader war against federal voting rights law
As Texas defends against accusations that its new political maps are discriminatory, it’s laying the groundwork to ask the U.S. Supreme Court to throw out longstanding Voting Rights Act protections.
Judge temporarily blocks Texas investigations into families of trans kids
District Judge Amy Clark Meachum said the governor’s directive for the state child welfare agency to investigate parents who provide gender-affirming care to their children was “beyond the scope of his authority and unconstitutional.” The statewide injunction will remain in effect until the case is heard in July.