AUSTIN, Texas – The Texas bar is investigating whether Attorney General Ken Paxton committed professional misconduct by challenging President Biden’s victory in court, calling a complaint a ‘frivolous lawsuit’ wasting taxpayers’ money has.
The investigation, which could lead to discipline ranging from reprimand to denial, is the latest obstacle for Mr. Paxton, which has been at the center of bribery and corruption allegations and was indicted in 2015 on charges of security fraud. not resolved.
Mr. Paxton, a Republican, is also being challenged by a member of the Bush family in next year’s primary election for attorney general, the state’s highest law enforcement office and a post that served as a political springboard. Greg Abbott and Senator John Cornyn preceded his office.
After it became clear that Mr. Biden who won the election, Mr. Paxton filed a lawsuit in early December that was mocked by many legal experts and eventually rejected by the U.S. Supreme Court. He asked the court to extend a deadline for the certification of presidential voters, arguing that irregularities in four other states – Georgia, Michigan, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin – warrant further investigation.
That month, Kevin Moran, a retired Houston Chronicle reporter and president of the Galveston Island Democrats, filed a grievance at the Texas State Bar. In his submission, Mr. Moran dat mnr. Paxton knows that the lawsuit is not meritorious and that any unelected lawyer will take disciplinary action for filing a frivolous lawsuit.
“Knowing that the national election was NOT hampered or stolen, he acted in a way that would fuel those unfounded conspiracy theories nationwide,” Moran wrote.
The Texas State Bar said it was prohibited by law to discuss any pending matters, and the attorney general’s office did not respond to a request for comment.
Ian Prior, spokesman for Paxton’s campaign, denounced the charge as a ‘low-level stunt’ and ‘frivolous allegation’, adding that ‘Democrats in Texas are still showing how much they can not stand electoral integrity . ‘
The complaint was initially dismissed by the Office of the State Bar’s disciplinary board, but later revived by the board of disciplinary appeals appointed by the Texas Supreme Court. The board of twelve members appointed Mr. Moran was notified in late May that he had granted his appeal after “finding that the grievance involved a possible violation” of the disciplinary rules for professional misconduct in Texas.
Moran, 71, said on Thursday that he had filed the complaint as an “upset citizen” – not as a Democratic official – because he was furious about the attorney general’s lawsuit, especially after a crowd of judges overcame the victory of Praying confirms it. .
“With his record, I believe he should be excluded,” he said of Mr. Paxton said.
After receiving a letter from the State Bar in January denying Moran his complaint, Moran filed an appeal saying he was somewhat surprised to be granted.
In cases such as Mr. Paxton, the Office of the Chief Disciplinary Board must conduct a preliminary investigation to determine whether there is reason to proceed. If a decision is made, the accusation of professional misconduct will be decided in a trial court or an evidence panel.
Mr. In his second term as attorney general in Texas, Paxton faces a difficult re-election campaign against George P. Bush, the state commissioner, as well as the grandson of former President George HW Bush and the son of Jeb Bush, the former governor of Florida. Both candidates are fighting for the approval of former President Donald J. Trump, who continues to exert influence over the Republicans of Texas.
Susan C. Beachy contributed research.