- The Washington Times - Tuesday, May 24, 2022

Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton secured renomination in a Republican run-off Tuesday, handily besting Land Commissioner George P. Bush.

Mr. Paxton, the current two-term incumbent, was declared the victor shortly after polls closed. Polling had shown Mr. Paxton consistently leading Mr. Bush, the grandson of former President George H.W. Bush.

Mr. Paxton has been able to outrun an ethical cloud surrounding his office, mainly by positioning himself as a conservative fighter in the mold of former President Donald Trump.

In the aftermath of the 2020 presidential race, Mr. Paxton led the legal fight to overturn the election, claiming widespread irregularity among swing states when processing ballots.

Although that effort proved futile, Mr. Paxton earned the admiration of Mr. Trump and the former president’s supporters.  

“Attorney General Ken Paxton has been bravely on the front line in the fight for Texas, and America, against the vicious and very dangerous radical left Democrats, and the foolish and unsuspecting RINOs that are destroying our country,” Mr. Trump said.

Given the Bush family ties and Mr. Paxton’s close relationship with Mr. Trump, the race was seen by many as a proxy fight for the soul of the Republican Party.

That perception is something that Mr. Bush tried doggedly to shake off throughout the campaign, especially given Mr. Trump’s strong popularity among Texas Republicans.

“It’s not about dynasties. It’s not about some sort of myth,” Mr. Bush said. “It’s about doing the right thing and supporting the right people for the right offices.”

Mr. Bush, in particular, sought to make the race about the series of ethical scandals swirling around Mr. Paxton. The attorney general has been under indictment for securities fraud since 2015, but has yet to face trial.

“I think anybody can plainly see that we’ve got a crook right now in our top law enforcement position who continually abuses his office,” Mr. Bush said.

• Haris Alic can be reached at halic@washingtontimes.com.

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