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Candidate Comparison: Texas Attorney General

Paxton vs. Nelson vs. Harris

Texas Attorney General

Over the past year, we have been asking candidates running for various local and statewide offices to answer questions for our Voter Guide. While full responses will be coming this weekend, we are offering you shortened versions in “Candidate Comparisons” ahead of the November election. Each response below came directly from the candidate’s questionnaire and are unedited.



Justin A. Nelson (Democrat)

Occupation: Attorney

Why did you decide to run?

“I am running for office to restore integrity to the Office of Texas Attorney General. I’ve never run for office before, but we need a Texas Attorney General who will fight for values like justice, fairness, and integrity. These values are not Republican or Democratic values. They are Texas values and they are American values.”

What qualifies you to serve in this office?

“The Texas Attorney General--the chief lawyer for Texas--should be a person who has had a successful legal career. We should be proud of our Texas Attorney General, not embarrassed by him. I am a Texas Super Lawyer, a former law clerk to two Reagan-appointed judges, including Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor. I teach at University of Texas Law School. From Justice O’Connor, I learned that defending the rule of law and the Constitution is not a partisan exercise. I’ve worked on numerous constitutional issues, including trying to fight gerrymandering. Individuals and companies hire me for serious and high-stakes litigation as part of my practice at Susman Godfrey.”

How are you better suited than your opponent(s) to hold this position?

“I am a lawyer who has been lucky and blessed enough to have a successful law career, who clerked for Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, who teaches at the University of Texas Law School, who believes in the rule of law, and who will work hard each day to protect the interests of all Texans. My opponent is a career politician who has chosen to focus on extreme ideological issues instead of fighting for all the people of Texas and who has been indicted for criminal fraud for defrauding his friends and clients. Who would you rather hire?”

What will be your top priority, if elected?

“Fighting against corruption, government waste, and special interests by serving as a check on power, not a rubber stamp. Fighting for the people of Texas by cracking down on consumer fraud, promoting equal pay for equal work, and protecting working families. Fighting for justice for all and the rule of law by applying the law fairly, bringing dignity to the office.”

No response received from: Ken Paxton (Republican), Michael Ray Harris (Libertarian)

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