The attorney general for the state of Texas, Ken Paxton, has agreed to apologize and pay $3.3m in taxpayer money to four former staffers who accused him of corruption in 2020, igniting an ongoing FBI investigation of the three-term Republican.
Under terms of a preliminary lawsuit settlement filed on Friday, Paxton made no admission of wrongdoing to accusations of bribery and abuse of office, which he has denied for years and called politically motivated
But Paxton did commit to making a remarkable public apology toward some of his formerly trusted advisers whom he fired or forced out after they reported him to the FBI. He called them “rogue employees” after they accused Paxton of misusing his office to help one of his campaign contributors, who also employed a woman with whom the attorney general acknowledged having an extramarital affair.
I’ll believe the apology when I see it. If it does materialize, I bet it’ll have a lot of backhanded comments like “It is regrettable that you were put into a position at odds with the attorney general.”
Paxton has a lot of legal trouble:
Under indictment for securities fraud since 2015 (no trial yet)
Investigated by bar for his bogus lawsuits challenging 2020 election results(arguing that other states disenfranchised Texas)
Lied about having evidence of mass voter fraud
The aforementioned whistleblower suits. The settlement being reported here does not preclude the ongoing criminal investigation into the whistleblower claims
None of this phases Texas Republicans. Texas Gov Abbott thinks he’s doing a bang up job. Why? Well, Paxton is fighting the culture wars.
He and Abbott have to cover up for the fact that sex crimes in Texas have spiked hard during their tenures and case closure rates have dropped. So they blame LGBTQ+ people instead of actually doing anything substantive.
That’s just one example of how Paxton is failing the people of Texas but keeping the Republican base stoked about him.