First reported by the Texas Scorecard, Ash Wright, Bush’s senior political advisor, did not rule out the possibility that Bush might be looking to change offices during the next election.
“Several donors have asked Commissioner Bush to consider running for Attorney General in 2022 in light of the recent allegations about that office,” said Wright. “Commissioner Bush has always said he will ‘keep all options open’ and that remains his policy. Like many conservative leaders around the state, he is very concerned about the allegations regarding Paxton.”
The speculation that Bush may be tossing his hat in the ring for the Office of the Attorney General (OAG) comes as Paxton faces scrutiny over allegations of abuse of office and bribery.
Several of Paxton’s senior aides voiced their concerns about his actions in a letter at the beginning of October, and since then, most have been reportedly placed on investigative leave or fired.
Rep. Chip Roy (R-TX-21), who served as Paxton’s top assistant at the beginning of his tenure in the office, called for the attorney general’s resignation at the beginning of October.
Paxton has maintained his innocence, placing blame on “rogue employees,” and his office has not responded to questions about the employment status of the whistleblowers.
If Bush does decide to run in the Republican primary against Paxton, the stage could be set for a contentious race, as Paxton reportedly remains committed to seeking reelection to his post.
Paxton’s campaign did not respond to a request for comment by the time of publishing.
Bush, the grandson of President George H.W. Bush and the son of former Florida Governor Jeb Bush, is a graduate of the University of Texas School of Law and clerked for a judge in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Texas.
He was first elected as land commissioner in 2014 with 61 percent of the vote and then won reelection in 2018 with 54 percent.
Bush’s potential run for the OAG is a shift from previous rumors he was considering a run for lieutenant governor, which circulated amidst a feud between Bush and Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick over renovation plans for the Alamo.
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Daniel Friend is the Marketing and Media Manager for The Texan. After graduating with a double-major in Political Science and Humanities, he wrote for The Texan as a reporter through June 2022. In his spare time, you're likely to find him working on The Testimony of Calvin Lewis, an Abolition of Man-inspired novel and theatrical podcast.