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Paxton trial updates: Closing arguments to begin Friday morning

By Texas Tribune Staff, The Texas Tribune

Paxton trial updates: Closing arguments to begin Friday morning” was first published by The Texas Tribune, a nonprofit, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

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The historic impeachment trial of suspended Attorney General Ken Paxton is underway in the Texas Senate. He faces 16 articles of impeachment that accuse him 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. Paxton pleaded not guilty to all impeachment articles on the trial’s first day. His defense attorneys have vowed to disprove the accusations and said they will present evidence showing they are based on assumptions, not facts.

Paxton’s defense team rests its case

Attorney General Ken Paxton’s team rested its case just after 5:30 p.m. Thursday. The defense called just four witnesses in total, all current department heads who currently work at the agency.

They had several hours of available time remaining.

The defense’s strategy appeared to be to attack individual articles of impeachment rather than refute the prosecution’s narrative of corruption and bribery.

Though the rules permitted both sides one hour each to present rebuttal evidence, lawyers for the defense and prosecution said they will move to their closing arguments instead when the impeachment trial resumes at 9 a.m. Friday.

— Zach Despart

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