FORT WORTH, Texas — Sen. Ted Cruz wasn't the only Texas elected leader leaving the state during a historic weather disaster.

Attorney General Ken Paxton and his wife Angela Paxton, a state senator, traveled to Utah last week while much of Texas was struggling with power outages and water issues brought on by extended subfreezing temperatures.

Paxton campaign spokesman Ian Prior told The Dallas Morning News that the trip had been planned before the weather event to meet with Utah Attorney General Sean Reyes about the multistate lawsuit Texas is leading against Google regarding "anti-competitive conduct in advertising," according to The Texas Tribune.

According to Reyes' spokesperson, Paxton met with Reyes on Wednesday and Friday, the Tribune reported.

Paxton's exact departure and return dates were not released by his spokesperson.

Cruz, R-Texas, was lambasted by critics for leaving Texas for a family vacation in Cancun, Mexico, on Thursday amid the disaster. Cruz returned to Houston the next day and eventually acknowledged the trip was a mistake.

Paxton has a criminal trial still pending from an indictment for felony securities fraud from more than five years ago. Meanwhile, several deputies in his attorney general's office resigned last year after accusing Paxton of accepting a bribe, charges that are currently being investigated.

"This is a pattern. Texas Republicans do not give a damn about the people they were elected to represent, and they continue to focus on issues that don't affect the lives of everyday Texans to gaslight them into thinking they are doing their jobs," Texas Democratic Party Chair Gilberto Hinojosa told the Tribune.


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