UNITED STATES NEWS

Texas AG Ken Paxton’s affair took a toll on office, a former staffer says at impeachment trial

Sep 11, 2023, 8:39 AM | Updated: 3:48 pm

AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — One of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton ‘s former staffers testified Monday that the Republican’s extramarital affair took a toll on employees who had to work long and odd hours because of the secret relationship that is now a factor in his impeachment trial.

“I told General Paxton quite bluntly it wasn’t my business who he was sleeping with, but when things bleed over into the office and into the state work, it becomes my business,” said Katherine Cary, the former chief of staff in Paxton’s office.

The affair is part of the abuse of power and bribery charges that Texas House Republicans have made against Paxton after years of alleged scandal and corruption. If convicted, he could be banned from holding office again in Texas. His fate is in the hands of the Republican-controlled Texas Senate, where a verdict could happen as soon as this week.

His wife, Angela Paxton, is a senator but is barred from voting in the proceedings. She sat at her desk on the chamber floor while Cary described how she warned Ken Paxton that his affair carried legal and political risks.

Paxton had the affair with a woman who worked for local developer Nate Paul, whose relationship with one of Texas’ most powerful figures is central to the impeachment trial. Through five days of testimony, five of Paxton’s former aides have testified how Paxton allegedly pressured them in various ways to help Paul, who was under FBI investigation and once gave Paxton a $25,000 campaign contribution.

Tony Buzbee, Paxton’s attorney, challenged Cary on cross examination about the importance an affair should have in an impeachment trial.

“Imagine if we impeached everyone in Austin who had an affair,” Buzbee said. “We’d be impeaching people for the next 100 years.”

Paxton, who has pleaded not guilty, is not required to be present for testimony and was again not in the Senate on Monday. Paxton was once a senator before becoming attorney general in 2015 and still has conservative allies in the chamber.

Cary was the first witness in the trial who was not one of eight former Paxton aides who reported him to the FBI in 2020. Later Monday, a former public corruption prosecutors in the district attorney’s office in Austin took the witness stand as the trial began a second week.

Republican Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who is presiding over the trial, said as the trial resumed Monday that the case was on track to go to the jury as soon as later this week. Patrick also said there will be no more days off until the trial is resolved, raising the possibility that a decision could come over the weekend.

Paxton was indicted on felony securities fraud charges in 2015 and has been under FBI investigation since an extraordinary revolt by his top deputies five years later.

Mark Penley, one of those former deputies, took the witness stand first Monday and was the latest to recount allegations of Paxton pressuring them to help Paul, who had given Paxton a $25,000 campaign contribution.

Paul, who was indicted in June on charges of defrauding banks, had accused FBI agents and a judge of wrongdoing. Penley said he wanted no part of it.

“That we would investigate a federal magistrate judge, and federal prosecutors, is insane,” Penley said.

___

Find AP’s full coverage of the impeachment of Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton at: https://apnews.com/hub/ken-paxton

United States News

Associated Press

15 people suffer minor injuries in tram accident at Universal Studios theme park in Los Angeles

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A tram accident at Universal Studios Hollywood in Los Angeles injured 15 people Saturday night, authorities and the company said. Los Angeles County Fire Department units were dipatched to the theme park on Lankershim Boulevard shortly after 9 p.m., the department said in a social media post. The victims taken to […]

1 hour ago

Associated Press

8 shot including 2 men killed at a party with hundreds attending in Memphis park, police say

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (AP) — Eight people were shot including two men who were killed at an unsanctioned public party in a Memphis city park Saturday night, police said. Officers responded at 7:19 p.m. to a reported shooting, Memphis Police Department Chief Cerelyn Davis said during a news conference at the scene. Two men were pronounced […]

3 hours ago

Associated Press

Vehicle crashes into building where birthday party held, injuring children and adults, sheriff says

BERLIN TOWNSHIP, Mich. (AP) — A vehicle drove through a boat club building where a children’s birthday celebration was taking place Saturday, seriously injuring a number of children and adults, a Michigan sheriff said in a news release. The victims were taken to several area hospitals after the crash that occurred at about 3 p.m. […]

8 hours ago

Associated Press

3 hospitalized after knife attack on party boat in New York City along Brooklyn waterfront

NEW YORK (AP) — A knife attack on a crowded party boat at a New York City pier Saturday resulted in the hospitalization of three people, police said. A 911 call came in around 5 p.m. reporting the assault along the Brooklyn waterfront near 58th Street and the Brooklyn Army Terminal warehouse, NYPD Detective Sophia […]

8 hours ago

Associated Press

Autoworkers union celebrates breakthrough win in Tennessee and takes aim at more plants in the South

DALLAS (AP) — The United Auto Workers’ overwhelming election victory at a Volkswagen plant in Tennessee is giving the union hope that it can make broader inroads in the South, the least unionized part of the country. The UAW won a stunning 73% of the vote at VW after losing elections in 2014 and 2019. […]

10 hours ago

Associated Press

Conditions improve for students shot in Maryland park on ‘senior skip day’

GREENBELT, Md. (AP) — Three of the five youths shot in a suburban Washington, D.C., park during a high school “senior skip day” gathering have been released from the hospital, while the condition of the most seriously injured has improved, authorities said Saturday. Police in Greenbelt, Maryland, are asking the public to share video footage […]

11 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Condor Airlines

Condor Airlines can get you smoothly from Phoenix to Frankfurt on new A330-900neo airplane

Adventure Awaits! And there's no better way to experience the vacation of your dreams than traveling with Condor Airlines.

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

...

Collins Comfort Masters

Avoid a potential emergency and get your home’s heating and furnace safety checked

With the weather getting colder throughout the Valley, the best time to make sure your heating is all up to date is now. 

Texas AG Ken Paxton’s affair took a toll on office, a former staffer says at impeachment trial