On Sunday, two-term Texas Republican Attorney General Ken Paxton, gave paradoxical opinions while trying to defend Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive orders.
Fox News Sunday host Chris Wallace made Paxton squirm in his seat while trying to explain his opposing views on imposing federal and state mandates.
Texas is one of at least 24 states that have sued over the Biden Administration’s vaccine-or-test mandate for businesses of more than 100 employees.
Paxton said state leaders want to leave the decision of whether to get vaccinated up to Texas employers and employees and it “shouldn’t be made by the federal government from (President) Joe Biden’s desk,” as reported by Houston Chronicle.
At the same time, Paxton is also defending Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive orders prohibiting businesses from vaccine mandates.
Wallace played a clip of Paxton on Newsmax earlier that week, saying businesses ought to be able to “take care of their workers,” and proceeded to ask Paxton how he justified the governor of Texas to issue an executive order that banned businesses from issuing vaccines, or issuing a ban on all school districts on mask mandates.
“The governor has authority under state law in an emergency to respond to these types of issues. And so he’s done just that,” Paxton said. “Obviously it is his view that these mask mandates are unnecessary and that vaccine requirements are also unnecessary. So it’s my job as a state’s attorney to go defend what he has done and what the Legislature has done. I’m perfectly comfortable doing that.”
According to the Houston Chronicle, Wallace proceeded to drill more on the issue, focusing on how Paxton’s opinion was that “Texas companies should take care of their own workers,” while at the same time supporting Abbott’s executive order and his enforcement of this order, which bans companies from taking care of their own workers.
In the end, Paxton agreed that the Biden Administration mandate goes outside the bounds of its power.
“I definitely agree that states have more authority over these areas than the federal government. The federal government has limited authority,” Paxton said. “Yes, states have a lot of authority to deal with what’s going on in their states. And I think that’s been clear from the founding of our country.”
Wallace then proceeded to ask Paxton about his opinion of Senate Bill 8, the new Texas law that bans abortions at about six weeks into pregnancy. He passed the ball to the Texas Legislature.
“I applaud the Legislature for doing anything they can to protect human life,” Paxton said. “They’re elected by people in the state, and they have the right to pass whatever laws they want, and we’ll deal with them in court when it comes up.”
To end the interview, Wallace brought up Paxton’s series of legal troubles that he has been carrying around since he was first elected in 2015, and that have now turned into an ongoing FBI investigation.
“Look, I’ve been dealing with this kind of fight — when you go out and do the types of things that I’ve done, you’re going to be challenged, you’re going to have issues like this pop up,” Paxton said.