Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is facing impeachment proceedings, with the Texas House of Representatives reportedly set to vote on the matter soon. Speaking at a press conference ahead of the vote, Paxton alleged that House members were displaying “absolute contempt for the electoral process” and were inflicting lasting damage on their chamber. The Texas House is controlled by the GOP, and its speaker is a Republican.
— DallasMetro.news (@DallasMetroNews) May 27, 2023
Conservatives have accused Texas House Speaker Dade Phelan of undermining conservative values by attacking Paxton and attempting to discredit the electoral process. Many have framed the Attorney General as a victim of a political witch hunt orchestrated by Democrats and Republicans who they claim are in name only. Republican Party of Texas Chair Matt Rinaldi has suggested that the impeachment proceedings are part of the Texas House’s opposition to conservative values. According to him, the “Phelan leadership team” is empowering Democrats, allowing them to hold leadership positions, and letting them control the agenda.
Governor Greg Abbott has remained silent on the issue, while Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick has said it would be inappropriate for him to comment. National Republicans, including former President Donald Trump, have expressed their support for Paxton. Donald Trump Jr. criticized the investigation into Paxton as a “disgrace,” tweeting that “MAGA stands with Ken Paxton against this RINO/DEMO led witch hunt!!!”
Other right-wing figures have also spoken out in support of Paxton. Former Trump adviser Stephen Miller urged conservatives to “stand with Ken” citing his frequent lawsuits against the Biden administration. Kyle Rittenhouse, who was acquitted of homicide after fatally shooting two Black Lives Matter protesters in Wisconsin, also accused Phelan of working with “anti-gun Democrats” and attacking the “pro-gun attorney general.”
The impeachment proceedings come amid several controversies involving Paxton. He has been accused of bribery and of using his office to benefit friends and associates. Critics have also accused him of mishandling high-profile legal cases, including the voter fraud lawsuit against four states that he brought before the Supreme Court, which was ultimately dismissed.