TX Rep. Resigns Amid Scandal

Rep. Bryan Slaton | Image by Evan L'Roy/The Texas Tribune

Rep. Bryan Slaton (R-Royse City) has resigned from his seat in the Texas Legislature following an investigative report alleging he gave alcohol to an underage staffer, had sex with her, and then pressured her to keep it a secret.

Slaton announced his resignation by letter on Monday morning, saying, “This is to inform the people of my legislative district, The Governor of the State of Texas, and the House of Representatives, that I hereby resign my position as a member of the legislature effective immediately.”

“It has been an honor to represent my friends, neighbors and the great people and communities of House District 2,” Slaton continued. “They voted overwhelmingly to send me to the Capitol as their representative in two elections, and I worked daily to meet their expectations.”

“My decision today is to ensure that their expectations will continue to be met by a new representative who will also work hard on their behalf,” Slaton said. “I am grateful to my many colleagues in the House who fought with me to improve our state for all Texans, and to those who, even when we could not agree, extended their friendship.”

“I look forward to spending more time with my young family, and will continue to find ways to serve my community and all citizens across our great state,” the letter concluded.

The letter contained neither an admission to the alleged actions nor an apology.

On Saturday, May 6, the House General Investigating Committee, led by Rep. Andrew Murr (R-Junction), announced its findings to the House: “We find that Representative Slaton has engaged in inappropriate sexual conduct with a subordinate. That behavior was induced by alcohol that Representative Slaton provided to that 19-year-old subordinate.”

“Representative Slaton then acted systematically to influence that subordinate and multiple witnesses and obstruct the investigation into the matter to the detriment of both our chamber and those who work here,” Murr continued.

The committee’s report included detailed accusations from several staffers. The staffers maintained that Slaton repeatedly provided alcohol to underage women and took the virginity of a 19-year-old employee who was intoxicated at the time.

Matt Rinaldi, the chairman of the Republican Party of Texas, said upon Slaton’s resignation, “The Republican Party of Texas commends the Texas House for responding swiftly and appropriately to the reprehensible actions of Representative Slaton.”

“The misconduct described in the General Investigative Committee Report should never be tolerated and is proper grounds for expulsion,” Rinaldi added. “These actions have betrayed the trust that the people of Representative Slaton’s district put in him as an elected official, and he has rightly resigned.”

“We are encouraged that this investigation signals the House has entered a new era of accountability where all members will be held to the same fair and high standards,” the statement concluded.

The House was scheduled to vote on a resolution to expel Slaton on Tuesday, May 9. Slaton’s seat will be filled by a special election in the near future.

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