Don’t be a potential felon
Sadly, one of the central qualifications of Attorney General Ken Paxton's challenger should be whether he or she has ever been charged with criminal fraud. If the answer is no, they're better suited for the job than the man in office today. With no Republican primary challenger, that question falls on lone Dem contender Justin Nelson, who can affirmatively say he has never faced such an indictment.
The 42-year-old Austin resident and Ivy League-educated civil litigation attorney serves as an adjunct professor at UT Law. A former clerk to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O'Connor, he founded One Nation One Vote, a nonprofit that pushes for electing the president by popular vote (something we could have used in 2016). He pointedly assures voters he'll protect Texans against "special interests, corruption, and fraud."
While Nelson was named a Texas Super Lawyer by Thomson Reuters, Paxton has spent the bulk of his first term battling securities fraud charges (a trial date has been pushed for the third time) and wasting taxpayer dollars on frivolous suits, including one lodged – and eventually dismissed for pettiness – against Austin officials last year over the sanctuary cities law. Carrying the legacy of former A.G. Abbott with even more fervor, Paxton and his minions have led an anti-LGBTQ and anti-choice crusade in the courts, battling for expanded religious freedom (read: state-sanctioned discrimination) and the demise of abortion access.
Potential convicted felon or Super Lawyer? The choice for voters should be clear.