Embattled Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton called on his supporters to protest outside the state capitol ahead of a Saturday vote on whether to impeach him over corruption allegations.
At a press conference on Friday, Paxton derided the impeachment effort by members of the state House of Representatives as an effort to overturn the results of last November’s election, when voters elected him to a third term as attorney general.
“They are determined to ignore the law,” Paxton said. “They have denied me the opportunity to present the evidence which contradicts their politically motivated narrative, and they are showcasing their absolute contempt for the electoral process.”
The Republican-led House General Investigating Committee on Thursday voted unanimously to advance articles of impeachment against the Republican attorney general after the conclusion of a months-long investigation.
The impeachment effort against Paxton is the result of an FBI criminal investigation into accusations that he used his office to assist a donor, Nate Paul, regarding unproven claims of a conspiracy to steal $200 million of his properties.
The articles of impeachment against Paxton accuse him of misusing public information law, using his office to help a donor, terminating employees who reported his “unlawful” conduct, bribery, misleading public officials, and more.
Paxton was also indicted in 2015 on several charges, including securities fraud, but has yet to face trial.
“This vote is expected to take place at 1 p.m. [Saturday], and I want to invite my fellow citizens and friends to peacefully come let their voices be heard at the Capitol tomorrow,” Paxton said at Friday’s press conference. “Exercise your right. Petition your government.”
“Let’s restore the power of this great state to the people instead of to the politicians,” he added.
If he is impeached Saturday, Paxton would be required by law to step aside as attorney general while he awaits trial in the state Senate.
Paxton said he expects a “quick resolution” in the state Senate if impeached.