State Watch

Former Paxton staffers say Texas AG is lying about them amid reelection bid

Former staffers for Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) said in a statement on Monday that Paxton is lying about them and lying to the FBI in an alleged corruption probe. 

Paxton is under investigation for allegedly accepting bribes and abusing his power, accusations that he has denied and have not led to federal charges filed against him, The Dallas Morning News reported.

Four former staffers — former deputy attorneys general James Brickman, J. Mark Penley and Ryan Vassar, along with David Maxwell, the former law enforcement director for the state attorney general’s office — released a statement Monday disputing some claims Paxton recently made about them and the investigation.

The statement says that, although they would like to remain silent, they needed to speak out because “in recent weeks, Paxton has made numerous false and misleading public statements that we feel obligated to correct,” according to the local outlet.

Paxton said in recent interviews he does not know the specific allegations against him in the probe. 

“We confronted Ken Paxton about his and his agency’s corrupt and criminal conduct, and, when he would not abide by the law, we reported him to the FBI,” the statement from the former staffers said. “Paxton is under criminal investigation, not the whistleblowers.”

Paxton also said the FBI searched his office and the whistleblowers were the one who broke the law, the Morning News noted. 

“The most basic qualifications of an attorney general are respect for truth and respect for the law. Ken Paxton has neither,” the statement continued. “The day will come when Ken Paxton must testify under oath about his and his agency’s actions. Until then, we call on Ken Paxton to start telling the truth to the people of Texas.”

Last year, Paxton’s own office investigated the allegations and cleared him of any wrongdoing. 

Paxton released his own statement on Monday following the whistleblowers’ statement but did not address them directly. He instead called out the media for reporting on the issue. 

He said the allegations were “re-instigated by the liberal media” and pointed to his own office’s investigation clearing him on the issue. 

“Every effective conservative leader is and will be attacked,” he stated. 

Paxton has three primary opponents seeking to oust him from his position.

Tags Ken Paxton Texas Attorneys General Whistleblower

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