Texas AG Ken Paxton's Supreme Court lawsuit to overturn Biden's win could get him disbarred
Ken Paxton Gabriel Aponte / Getty Images
Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) has been on state fraud charges for nearly six years, the FBI is investigating him for allegedly taking bribes from a real estate developer, and his offer for a third term is threatened by Texas Land Commissioner George P. Bush basing his main challenge in part on Paxton's legal issues. Now, The Associated Press reports, Paxton is facing a disciplinary investigation by the Texas Bar Association.
The State Bar of Texas originally rejected a complaint alleging that Paxton had committed professional misconduct by petitioning the US Supreme Court to overturn President Biden's victory in four swing states. But the appeals court, a tribunal of 12 independent attorneys appointed by the Texas Supreme Court, overturned that ruling late last month and ordered the bar to investigate whether Paxton's lawsuit to overturn Biden's election victory was frivolous, unethical, and in was filed in bad faith. AP reported on Wednesday.
Prosecutors dismiss thousands of complaints each year, and the appellate body overturns those dismissals less than 7 percent of the time.
The lawsuit against Paxton was brought by Keith Moran, President of the Galveston Island Democrats. 71-year-old Moran showed AP his first complaint, as well as a letter from the Board of Disciplinary Action dated June 3 stating that Paxton had less than a month to respond. Paxton "wanted to strip voters in four other states," Moran told AP. "It's just crazy." He told the Texas Tribune that Paxton should have dropped the lawsuit after legal experts correctly predicted that the Supreme Court would simply dismiss them. "He wasted my tax money," said Moran.
Bush made a similar argument after making his offer to depose Paxton. "It was a Hail Mary pass that every attorney in the Texas bar association in and around the country knows would not have been successful, but he followed it anyway," he told reporters. "I understand what he was up to, but it had no chance of getting an audience with the Supreme Court."
After Paxton's response window closes, bar staff will convene a grand jury where bar investigators can interview witnesses, issue subpoenas and hold hearings, AP reports. If these proceedings determine that Paxton is likely to have committed wrongdoing, disciplinary proceedings will be initiated which may result in expulsion, suspension, reduced sentence, or a determination that he did nothing wrong.
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