To celebrate Gov. Greg Abbott’s reelection last year, his inaugural committee paid a whopping $1.7 million to hire country crooner George Strait and his band. A coterie of top political aides and staff got more than $1 million, some of it paid out in six-figure bonuses. And a handful of lucky charities received $800,000 in unspent money.
Left out of that tally: the $116,000 taxpayers spent to keep all those inaugural expenditures secret.
Abbott and the 2019 Texas Inaugural Committee spent months fighting the disclosure of documents detailing how they spent a record-setting $5.3 million that event organizers raised mostly from corporations and wealthy donors.