The Houston Chronicle published an Editorial Page attack on Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton. I asked for the opportunity to respond with relevant facts that were omitted from their biased editorial.
No surprise, they refused to print it. They clearly don’t want to confuse their readers with facts.
I”m publishing my response, which the Houston Chronicle refused to run. If you believe there is media bias, I hope you will “like” and “share” this posting. Thanks, Steve.
IN DEFENSE OF KEN PAXTON
By Steve Toth
The Houston Chronicle Editorial Board’s latest attack on Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton reveals a dramatic irony (Paxton’s Tale, October 26). The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines “tale” as an imaginative narrative of an event or an intentionally untrue report. The ‘tale’ being told is not by Paxton, but by the Houston Chronicle.
The Chronicle got one thing right in their editorial. The Securities and Exchange Commission under President Obama’s Administration did investigate the matter. But what the Chronicle deliberately omits is the key fact that the SEC’s investigation against Paxton fell apart in court and was twice dismissed for lack of merit. In fact, the US District Judge Amos Mazzant, an Obama appointee to the federal bench, dismissed the case “with prejudice” and indicated that the allegations against Paxton, even if true, weren’t a violation of the law.
In addition, the Chronicle failed to mention that the SEC lawyer who brought the charges against Paxton was a democratic primary voter and political donor to President Obama’s campaign. It is no coincidence that the charges against Paxton were brought just days before he appeared at the United States Supreme Court to represent the state of Texas in its challenge to President Obama’s illegal amnesty executive order. Readers should question why the Editorial Board didn’t tell you these clearly relevant facts.
The paper recklessly and maliciously chose to use words like “bribery”, “cheat” and “shady” to inflict guilt by association. But they don’t tell you that state law permits the donation in question. Further, it fails to inform readers the reason the public knows about the donation is because Paxton himself voluntarily disclosed it on his annually required paperwork over 2 years ago … hardly the conduct of a man trying to hide something.
The Editorial Board also recently criticized Paxton and blamed his attorneys for attempting to avoid trial. Court filings conclusively point out that Paxton has sought numerous trial dates to have his day in court. In a remarkable demonstration of the lack of confidence in its own reporting, the Editorial Board overlooked their own recent stories that said “… special prosecutors want criminal case delayed until they are paid” (Houston Chronicle, June 29, 2017) and “… special prosecutors to push for trial delay” (Houston Chronicle, Sept. 29, 2017) and finally, “Judge Robert Johnson granted a motion for continuance in the case at the behest of the special prosecutors” (Houston Chronicle, October 4, 2017).
Shame on the Editorial Board for impugning the intelligence of voters, both in the Republican primary, the Republican primary runoff and the general election. We cast our educated, informed ballot for a conservative champion of constitutional freedoms and elected Ken Paxton as our choice for Attorney General. Voters were very aware of the baseless allegations during the last election and they rightly dismissed them for what they were, politically motivated and media supported unsubstantiated attacks. Now, the case against Attorney General Paxton is crumbling, much to the chagrin of liberal Democrats, some disgruntled moderate Republicans and the entire Texas press establishment.
When the Houston Chronicle Editorial Board relies on deliberate omissions to make their case and questions the intelligence of its readers, it’s no wonder why the public holds the media in such low regard.
Toth is a resident of The Woodlands and a former member of the Texas Legislature.