Perry attorneys want indictment dismissed

Attorney Tony Buzbee introduces Gov. Rick Perry's defense team to the media.
Attorney Tony Buzbee introduces Gov. Rick Perry's defense team to the media.

AUSTIN, (KXAN) — A motion filed in court Monday asks the judge overseeing the criminal charges against Gov. Rick Perry to dismiss the charges calling them unconstitutional.

Perry’s team of attorneys filed the 60-page which asks that the judge “dismiss the indictment and bar any further prosecution of Governor Perry.”

At the center of the issue is a complaint about intimidation stemming from Perry’s threat to veto of $7.5 million in state funding to the Public Integrity Unit run by Lehmberg’s office. The threat came after she pleaded guilty to drunk driving and served a 45-day sentence; Perry called on her to step down but she refused to resign her position. Perry then vetoed the funding for the PIU.

Monday’s motion argues, among other things, that the indictment improperly brings the judicial branch of the government into a political dispute saying it violates the “cherished separation of powers.”

It continues saying, “By seeking to criminalize not merely the veto itself, but the Governor’s explanation for it as well, this prosecution also violates the Governor’s rights under the Free Speech Clauses of the United States and Texas Constitution and the Speech or Debate Clause of the Texas Constitution.”

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