Texas Democrat abstained from impeaching Ken Paxton 'so that he drags down' Republicans

Texas Democrat abstained from impeaching Ken Paxton 'so that he drags down' Republicans
Image via screengrab.

The Texas House of Representatives on Saturday voted 121-43 to adopt twenty articles of impeachment against the Lonestar State's Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton, who is accused of multiple high crimes and misdemeanors.

"Attention now shifts to the Texas Senate, which will conduct a trial with senators acting as jurors and designated House members presenting their case as impeachment managers," The Texas Tribunereported. "The move to impeach came less than a week after the House General Investigating Committee revealed that it was investigating Paxton for what members described as a yearslong pattern of misconduct and questionable actions that include bribery, dereliction of duty and obstruction of justice. They presented the case against him Saturday, acknowledging the weight of their actions."

Paxton — along with his GOP allies – has denied all of the allegations and insists that the efforts to remove him from office are "illegal, unethical, and profoundly unjust."

READ MORE: 'Why are you so desperate': Texas GOP Rep. lambasted over defending Ken Paxton

Yet the opposition to charging Paxton is not limited to Republicans. State Representative Harold Dutton (D-142nd District) abstained from casting a ballot because of procedural disagreements.

"This is not a difficult decision for me,” Dutton said on Saturday. "The process by which we're getting this done seems to be abbreviated to the point that it encroaches on due process."

The Texas Tribunenoted that Dutton's choice was "not about whether he believes Paxton is guilty or not."

On Sunday, however, Dutton revealed to Houston's FOX26 another dimension to his rationale.

READ MORE: Texas AG Ken Paxton 'furious' over House panel’s calls for impeachment

"I didn't think that there was really enough in the way of evidence persuading me that we needed to do this. The other thing I thought is this all night, I thought about it. I thought about, well, wait a minute. Why should we get rid of, help them get rid of Paxton?" Dutton recalled. "We oughta leave him there so that he drags down the whole ticket at the next election and we have a possibility to make some changes at the top."

Watch below or at this link.

READ MORE: Texas AG Ken Paxton impeached — suspended from duties pending outcome of Senate trial

The Texas Tribune's full articles are available here and here.

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