Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R) traveled to Utah final week through the winter storms that claimed dozens of lives and knocked out power to millions of residents, native media shops reported on Monday.
Paxton’s spokesperson, Ian Prior, mentioned the legal professional common flew to Utah along with his spouse, state Sen. Angela Paxton, as a part of a “beforehand deliberate journey.”
“While there, AG Paxton had plenty of conferences with the Utah Attorney General over the course of a number of days,” Prior mentioned.
Prior additionally famous that the journey centered partly on an antitrust lawsuit in opposition to Google.
“I can’t additional share extra particulars or the precise causes on the necessity for the assembly regarding Google because it entails an ongoing investigation,” he mentioned.
The Dallas Morning News was the first to report particulars of Paxton’s journey. It’s unclear why the Paxtons did not postpone the conferences or conduct them nearly ― or if that they had returned to Texas.
He was in Utah for a gathering? Does @KenPaxtonTX not have a Zoom account? In per week when there have been a number of stories of value gouging, the highest official charged with client safety was out of state. And he needs his funds elevated? #txlege https://t.co/gTWJZZbyhv
— Chris Turner (@ChrisGTurner) February 22, 2021
Prior instructed CNN that Paxton didn’t depart Texas “till after energy had returned to many of the state, together with his own residence.”
Paxton has pledged to analyze the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which operates many of the state’s electrical grid. Unlike the remainder of the continental United States, Texas has its personal energy community which is essentially unregulated, and a series of predictable faults led to the dramatic rolling blackouts that impacted a big portion of the state.
— Attorney General Ken Paxton (@KenPaxtonTX) February 20, 2021
Paxton is the most recent Texas official to be questioned over his response to the lethal winter storm. Sen. Ted Cruz (R) drew fierce criticism after he was noticed on the airport en path to Cancun final week whereas hundreds of thousands of Texans struggled with out energy or warmth amid sub-freezing temperatures.
Cruz juggled between excuses, at occasions blaming his daughters and obfuscating his journey dates, earlier than apologizing and saying the journey was a “mistake.”
“In hindsight, I would not have performed it,” Cruz mentioned. “I began having second ideas nearly the second I sat down on the airplane as a result of on the one hand, all of us who’re mother and father have a duty to maintain our youngsters, maintain our household. That’s one thing Texans have been doing throughout the state.”
The Houston Chronicle reported that one other lawmaker, state Rep. Gary Gates (R), additionally left Texas and flew to Florida on a non-public jet following the storm.
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