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Gov. Abbott appoints John Scott as interim Texas attorney general

Scott served as the Secretary of State from October 2021 until December 2022.

AUSTIN, Texas — Gov. Greg Abbott has named former Secretary of State John B. Scott as interim Texas Attorney General.

The move comes as impeached Attorney General Ken Paxton is suspended from serving while he awaits trial in the Texas Senate.

Scott, from Fort Worth, served as Texas Secretary of State from October 2021 until December 2022. Scott also previously served as the Texas Deputy Attorney General for Civil Litigation for Abbott when he served as attorney general.

“John Scott has the background and experience needed to step in as a short-term interim Attorney General during the time the Attorney General has been suspended from duty,” Abbott said.

Scott oversaw all civil litigation, including over 22,000 lawsuits involving Texas. Subsequently, Scott was appointed the first chief operating officer of the Health and Human Services Commission. He oversaw the overhaul of the agency, its 56,000 employees and its over $50 billion biannual budget.

After returning to private practice, Abbott appointed Scott as the chair of the Board for the Department of Information Resources (DIR). At DIR, Scott developed the plan for technology and security at Texas executive branch agencies and boards.

Scott also briefly joined former President Donald Trump’s legal team last year as it challenged the 2020 election results, although he withdrew after three days. His appointment as secretary of state alarmed a number of voting rights groups, as it came amidst a pressure campaign from the former president and Republican activists to perform an audit of the election in Texas, despite Trump winning the state by over 600,000 votes.

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