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Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton was acquitted by the state Senate during his historic impeachment trial Saturday.
The case was turned over to the 30 top lawmakers in the state Friday to deliberate on 16 articles of impeachment related to allegations of abuses of power heard during the sensational two-week trial in Austin.
Paxton received overwhelming support from his GOP colleagues in the state Senate. All but two of the chamber’s 18 Republicans voted to acquit him on all 16 counts.
“Today, the truth prevailed,” Paxton said in a statement after the vote, which he was not present for.
“The truth could not be buried by mudslinging politicians or their powerful benefactors. I’ve said many times: Seek the truth! And that is what was accomplished.”
The vote is a sharp repudiation of the GOP-dominated Texas state Assembly, which voted overwhelmingly to impeach Paxton in May.
“We discovered unprecedented abuse in the Texas Attorney General’s office by Mr. Paxton,” GOP Rep. Andrew Murr, who served as a prosecutor against Paxton, said during closing arguments on the Senate floor Friday.
The case against Paxton centered on his relationship with real estate developer Nate Paul, a major political donor whom he was accused by members of his office of illegally doing numerous favors for.
Paul was also said to have helped Paxton by giving his mistress employment and keeping the relationship secret.
“We all have sinned and fallen short,” Paxton lawyer Tony Buzbee declared of his client, who’s been married to his college sweetheart, state Sen. Angela Paxton, since 1986. Although the senator was ordered to be in court for the trial, she was not allowed to vote.
“If this impeachment is based on martial impropriety, then line up, line up; we’re going to be doing a lot of impeachment in this city,” Buzbee added.
Paxton paramour Laura Olson — whose identity was revealed by The Post in May — was supposed to testify during the trial, but despite being called to the stand was mysteriously allowed to skip out of giving evidence.
Olson, a former political aid for state Sen. Donna Campbell, presented herself at the state capitol building Wednesday, however, when prosecutors tried to call her to the witness stand she was deemed “unavailable to testify.”
Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick, who had admitted to previously having met Olson and presided as judge at Paxton’s trial, didn’t give a reason why she was unavailable but added both prosecutors and Paxton’s defense team had agreed to it.
The move meant Olson avoided having to testify in front of his wife.
Paxton himself did not attend most of his own trial, only showing his face during opening and closing arguments.
The Senate needed 21 votes to remove him from office.
The acquittal means he could resume his role as chief prosecutor in the Lone Star State.
Separately, Paxton is facing criminal charges in Houston, according to the Texas Tribune. Those charges stem from accusations he defrauded investors of tech startup Servergy, Inc.