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Paxton Decries State Bar’s Election Suit ‘Lawfare’

Attorney General Ken Paxton
Attorney General Ken Paxton | Image by Ken Paxton/Facebook

Attorney General Ken Paxton has accused the State Bar of “politically motivated lawfare” against Paxton and the Office of the Attorney General leadership.

On Tuesday, the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) filed a petition asking the Texas Supreme Court to review the State Bar’s attempts to issue sanctions against Paxton and other OAG leadership.

In 2022, the State Bar sued to discipline Paxton for attempting to overturn the 2020 Joe Biden presidential election based on claims of “fraud.” The punishment would potentially revoke Paxton and First Assistant Attorney General Brent Webster’s license to practice law.

“After Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a lawsuit in the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of the State of Texas in response to good-faith concerns of unconstitutional conduct by States during the 2020 presidential election, the State Bar of Texas retaliated by attempting to sanction Attorney General Paxton and First Assistant Attorney General Brent Webster for filing that lawsuit, and it initiated disciplinary actions against them to obtain that result,” said the OAG in a news release.

“The State Bar’s attempt to sanction the Attorney General is an unconstitutional violation of the Texas Constitution’s Separation of Powers Clause and violates his sovereign immunity. Nevertheless, over an erudite dissent, a sharply divided court of appeals permitted the Bar’s lawsuit to go forward,” the release continued. “The petition for review requests the Texas Supreme Court to intervene to prevent the State Bar’s continued abuse of the legal system.”

The lawsuit was initially dismissed; however, the State Bar appealed the case to the Dallas Fifth Court of Appeals, which permitted the process to proceed.

In April, a national coalition of 17 general attorneys nationwide filed a brief with the Supreme Court of Texas to show their support for Paxton and Webster. The briefing states that the attorney generals have an “interest in ensuring that State Attorneys General are permitted to exercise the discretionary authority conferred on them by their State Constitutions without improper interference or distractions.”

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