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Senators Begin Deliberating AG’s Fate on 16 Articles of Impeachment

The impeachment case against suspended Attorney General Ken Paxton has gone to the jury. Texas Senators will vote on 16 articles of impeachment. He is accused of misusing the powers of the attorney general’s office to help his friend and donor Nate Paul, an Austin real estate investor who was under federal investigation.

The House impeachment managers insisted that they proved their claims of bribery and corruption, arguing that the jury of 30 senators had no choice but to convict. Paxton’s defense team said the case was full of holes, circumstantial evidence and misdirection.

If 21 of 30 eligible senators convict Paxton on any of the 16 articles of impeachment, he is automatically removed from office and there will be a subsequent vote on whether to permanently bar him from seeking state office. Sen. Angela Paxton, the attorney general’s wife, was prohibited from participating in deliberations or voting.

Sept. 15, 2023 at 12:11 p.m.

Lt. Gov. Patrick lays out ground rules for Senate deliberations

It could be a long weekend for the Texas Senate, if they want to take the time.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick told senators before they left the floor to deliberate on the 16 impeachment articles against suspended Attorney General Ken Paxton that they can return at any time, with at least 30-minutes notice, to vote on each article.

They must deliberate until at least 8 p.m. tonight but can go longer if they want, Patrick said.

If more time is needed, they must return at 9 a.m. Saturday and deliberate until at least 8 p.m. A Sunday session would start at noon through at least 8 p.m., Patrick said.

If senators are not ready to vote by then, Patrick said he could decide to sequester them in the Capitol.

Texas Senate heads to deliberations in Ken Paxton impeachment trial

Sept. 15, 2023 at 11:58 a.m.

The state Senate has exited the Senate floor to start deliberations in the impeachment trial of suspended Attorney General Ken Paxton after lawyers for both sides completed their closing arguments.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who is presiding over the impeachment proceedings, told senators Friday morning that they cannot read the news. use their cell phones or speak to anybody who is not another senator while deliberating.

Two-thirds of the full Senate, 21 senators, need to vote yes on any of the 16 articles to remove Paxton from office. If an article is affirmed, senators also will vote on whether Paxton should be barred from holding state office ever again.

Sen. Angela Paxton, R-McKinney, is not allowed to deliberate or vote due to “spousal conflict” under trial rules approved by senators.

This story originally appeared on the Texas Tribune. To read this article in its original format, click here.

Kate McGee, The Texas Tribune
Kate McGee, The Texas Tribune
Kate McGee covers higher education for The Texas Tribune.

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