My bad. I gave in to the clickbait.
I receive a regular email of top headlines from the Dallas Morning News.
On an email Sunday, the Dallas newspaper touted a story reporting that "Attorney General Ken Paxton's pastor sues lead witnesses in criminal case."
Interesting, I thought. So I clicked.
It turns out that Paxton attends Prestonwood Baptist Church, a Dallas-area megachurch accustomed to making headlines.
The Rev. Jack Graham, a former Southern Baptist Convention president, is Prestonwood's pastor. But that's not who the headline is talking about.
AUSTIN — Attorney General Ken Paxton's pastor has sued the lead witnesses against him in his upcoming criminal trials.
Last week, Prestonwood Baptist Church Executive Pastor Mike Buster filed a lawsuit against Rep. Byron Cook and Florida businessman Joel Hochberg, the two men named on Paxton's fraud indictments. Paxton attends Prestonwood's main campus in Plano.
Buster alleges that Cook and Hochberg bilked him out of about a half-million dollars, described as "a substantial percentage of his personal net worth." Cook was manager of an energy asset management company that Buster says recommended he purchase mineral rights from Cook and Hochberg "at exorbitant markups and after very short holding times."
Later in the story — for those not familiar with Paxton's legal troubles — the paper notes:
Paxton, a Republican, was indicted in July 2015 on two first-degree felony charges accusing him of defrauding Cook and Hochberg in a tech startup investment scheme. He is also accused of funneling clients to a friend's investment firm without being properly registered with the state.
He faces maximum penalties of 99 years in prison and tens of thousands of dollars in fines if found guilty. Paxton has flatly denied the allegations and blamed them on a political witch hunt perpetrated by Hochberg and Cook, also a Republican.
OK, so what is the connection between Buster and Paxton? Good question. At least I think so. Apparently, the Dallas Morning News disagrees. Or maybe this quick-hit story was all about the clickbait.