Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R-TX) ran for his life as if he was being chased by a mob with pitchforks and torches. In fact, it was nothing more than a lowly process server trying to hand the chief Texas lawman a subpoena.
Speaking on MSNBC to Stephanie Ruhle explained the lawsuit was brought by health groups looking to help women access legal abortions in states outside of Texas.
"The process server said [Paxton] fled his home to avoid the subpoena. His wife, a state senator, then quote got inside the truck and started it, leaving the rear door behind the driver's side open. A few moments later, I saw Mr. Paxton run toward the driver's side. I loudly called him by his name and stated I had documents for him. Mr. Paxton ignored me and headed towards the truck," Ruhle read aloud.
The process server was not wearing a GoPro camera or any other recording device to capture the moment on film, though the description of someone whose supposed to be a tough guy hiding behind his wife drew mockery from the political world. The Fort Worth Star-Telegram even went so far as to say that every time Ken Paxton was in the news, it humiliates the state of Texas.
Paxton claimed that the media was trying to drum up another controversy and a "stranger" was lingering outside of his home leading to fears for his safety. Typically when lawmakers fear for their own safety, they have security officials outside of their homes. Paxton didn't
"This coming from a man who has reportedly gone to court to defend a Texas law that allows perfect strangers to sue women on the suspicion they might have had an abortion," Ruhle said.
Former federal prosecutor and Alabama University School of Law Professor Joyce White Vance said she was "speechless" because as the chief lawman of a state he shouldn't be afraid for his life due to a process server.
"Paxton, the attorney general of the state of Texas, understands and appreciates how this works," she said. "So, what this boils down to is that Paxton, the attorney general, the person who's supposed to be in charge and engage in oversight of Texas' criminal justice system, was afraid of facing the courts himself. If that's not a perfect way of capturing what's going on in Texas on this abortion issue, I don't know what is."
It's possible Paxton didn't know that it was a process server when he fled his home after diving into a car. If that was true, however, it's unclear why he would force his wife to go outside and face the process server. Since scurrying away, Paxton hasn't accepted the service of the subpoena.
Former Republican lawmaker David Jolly questioned why exactly Paxton would run scared.
"Paxton is one of the more disreputable figures in American politics today," Jolly said, not holding back. "The only thing you didn't mention is that he spoke and participated in the Jan. 6th rally. I think it's that final piece that led him to re-election over George P. Bush, one of the younger Bush family members in Texas. Paxton labeled Bush an establishment legacy Republican and said he was the true Trump Republican and so Texans elected him by a margin of about two to one. This little episode kind of leaves you questioning a lot, but I think it's clear of the person we're speaking about."
Jolly explained that a person could accept a subpoena and not testify. Paxton didn't need to jump into a moving vehicle like a bank robber fleeing the scene.
"You can petition this is out of bounds and ultimately, that's what he asked the court to do is [quash] the subpoena and he was victorious in doing that," said Jolly. "But to run from a process server raises a couple of questions. One, did he think it was about something else? Did he know it was about this matter or did he think he was being approached about something else or why did he feel threatened? Someone that participated in the Jan. 6th rally with a largely white crowd trying to topple democracy being approached by a process server who appears to be Hispanic or not white? Why doesn't he say I'm the top lawyer in the state? I'm smart enough to handle this. Paxton, he's a bad guy. Let's just be honest. He's under indictment. He's been accused of bribery by people within his own office. He participated in Jan. 6th and ran from a process server. He's a bad guy."
'He's a bad guy': Former Republican lists Ken Paxton's crimes as the reason he ran scared youtu.be