From Choirboy to ‘threat?' Texas Secretary of State David Whitley Defends Scrutiny of Possible Noncitizen Voters

AUSTIN — For several years in the late 2000s, embattled interim Texas Secretary of State David Whitley was a behind-the-scenes "logistics guy" who arranged events for then-Attorney General Greg Abbott. Whitley subsequently became Abbott's travel aide, driving the future governor to events and helping him transfer from car to wheelchair."Things work really well" when everyone in Abbott's entourage is "a pretty low-maintenance traveler," Whitley recalled recently.Then came Election Advisory No. 2019-02.For Abbott, Whitley suddenly became a high-maintenance traveler.By issuing the Jan. 25 alert, the secretary of state’s office kicked off a political storm by proposing that counties check to see if a list of nearly 100,000 registered voters contains any ineligible noncitizens.However, Abbott intimates and senators who've worked closely with Whitley in recent years on gubernatorial appointments said they never doubted the GOP governor would stand by his appointee. And he is.That's because Whitley, 36, is one of several current or former advance men and travel aides whom Abbott and his wife, first lady Cecilia Abbott, are said to regard almost as their own children.  Continue reading...

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