AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — Attorneys for impeached Republican Texas Lawyer Basic Ken Paxton on Monday sought to have many of the prices towards him dismissed, arguing that they depend on alleged acts of corruption earlier than he was reelected to a 3rd time period in 2022.
In motions filed with the Senate, the place Paxton’s impeachment trial is scheduled to start Sept. 5, his attorneys mentioned they imagine state legislation bars the removing of an official for conduct that occurred earlier than their most up-to-date election. Paxton was first elected lawyer basic in 2014 and the impeachment prices embrace alleged conduct since then.
“The Articles allege nothing that Texas voters have not heard from the Attorney General’s political opponents for years,” Paxton’s attorneys wrote. They accused the GOP-dominated Texas Home of Representatives of searching for to oust Paxton as a result of they had been unable to unseat him by fashionable vote.
“Texas voters rendered their judgement by re-electing Attorney General Paxton to serve a third consecutive term. As a matter of both common sense and Texas law, that should be the end of the matter,” his attorneys wrote.
Solely one of many 20 impeachment prices — an allegation that Paxton settled a whistleblower lawsuit in an effort to cover from the general public corruption allegations towards him — wouldn’t must be dismissed below the so-called “prior term doctrine,” Paxton’s lawyer mentioned. Paxton requested state lawmakers this 12 months to have the state pay the proposed $3.3 million settlement.
In a second submitting, Paxton’s attorneys mentioned the trial ought to exclude any proof of alleged conduct that occurred previous to January 2023, when his third time period in workplace started.
The motions from Paxton’s attorneys are much like strikes in a legal or civil authorized instances when protection attorneys search to have prices or lawsuits dismissed earlier than trial.
On this case, the presiding officer over Paxton’s impeachment trial shall be Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, a strong Republican who additionally serves because the president of the state Senate. The Republican-controlled Senate will contemplate the proof and resolve whether or not to convict or acquit Paxton within the first impeachment trial of a statewide official since 1917.
Patrick has already issued a sweeping gag order over the events and attorneys concerned forward of the Senate trial. Attorneys for Home of Representatives managers prosecuting Paxton didn’t instantly reply to the motions filed Monday.
Paxton has been suspended from workplace for the reason that Home first authorized the articles of impeachment on Might 27. He could possibly be completely eliminated if convicted by the Senate.