Oct 4, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Aides to Texas attorney general accuse him of "abuse of office" and bribery

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton

Photo: Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton, 2015. Photo: Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc/Corbis via Getty Images

Seven aides to Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton have asked federal authorities to investigate their boss, alleging "improper influence, abuse of office, bribery, and other potential criminal offenses," the Austin American-Statesman reports.

Details: A letter, dated Oct. 1 and signed by the seven aides, does not contain specific allegations, but it is a significant complaint coming from Paxton's closest deputies.

  • The attorney general, a staunch conservative who is leading the lawsuit against the Affordable Care Act that's headed to the Supreme Court, is already under indictment for securities fraud, according to the American-Statesman.

The letter was signed by Jeff Mateer, Paxton's first assistant attorney general who resigned this week, his deputy and others who were in Paxton's inner circle. Mateer was nominated by President Trump in 2017 for a federal judgeship but later dropped by the White House after fierce opposition from Democrats and gay rights activists.

  • The group says in the letter they notified Paxton by text message that they were making the complaint.

The other side: "The complaint filed against Attorney General Paxton was done to impede an ongoing investigation into criminal wrongdoing by public officials including employees of this office," Paxton's office said in a statement.

  • "Making false claims is a very serious matter and we plan to investigate this to the fullest extent of the law," the statement added.
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