Charles Schwertner

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Charles Schwertner
Member of the Texas Senate
from the 5th district
Assumed office
January 8, 2013
Preceded bySteve Ogden
Member of the Texas House of Representatives
from the 20th district
In office
January 11, 2011 – January 8, 2013
Preceded byDan Gattis
Succeeded byMarsha Farney
Personal details
Born (1970-05-29) May 29, 1970 (age 49)
Tuscaloosa, Alabama
Political partyRepublican
Williamson County
Texas, USA
Alma materUniversity of Texas at Austin, B.S., University of Texas Medical Branch-Galveston, MD
OccupationOrthopedic surgeon

Charles J. Schwertner (born May 29, 1970)[1] is an American orthopedic surgeon and politician from Georgetown, Texas. He has served in the Texas State Senate since November 6, 2012, after having represented House District 20 in the Texas House of Representatives for a single term beginning in January 2011.[2] He is a Republican.

Texas Senate[edit]

As a member of the Texas Senate, Schwertner served as chairman of the Senate Committee on Health and Human Services.[3][4] He is currently a member of the Senate Committees on Finance, Administration, Business & Commerce, and State Affairs.[5] Schwertner was named to the Sunset Advisory Commission in 2013.[6]

Schwertner was named one of the "Worst Legislators" by Texas Monthly magazine in 2017.[7]

Schwertner won reelection in 2018 with 182,081 votes (55.4 percent) to 136,232 (41.4 percent) for his Democratic opponent, Meg Walsh. Another 10,446 votes (3.2 percent) went to the Libertarian Party choice, Amy Lyons.[8]

Allegations of lewd texting[edit]

In July 2018, Schwertner met a female University of Texas graduate student at a university-affiliated event. The student told the Senator she was interested in working at the Texas Legislature. After the event, Schwertner was accused of sending sexually-explicit texts to said student. On October 8, 2018, the University of Texas at Austin hired Johnny Sutton, a former federal prosecutor, to investigate these claims as such harassment could be a violation of Title IX, a federal civil rights law.[9]

A message from Schwertner's LinkedIn account sent to the graduate student said: "Hope you're getting my texts I sent to you." The student responded: "Please stop the inappropriate texts, it is unprofessional." The student also received text messages from a 512 number that matched a business card belonging to Schwertner. These messages included: "Sorry. I really just wanted to fuck you," "This is Charles," "Send a pic?" and "Hello? Want to just use LinkedIn? Or my main cell?" [10]

Schwertner claimed the messages were sent by a third person whom Schwertner had given log-in credentials to. Schwertner refused to identify this third person and no proof was provided for the existence of said person. The messages were sent through Hushed, an app to send messages from a burner phone. Government watchdogs say the case exposes the threat private message apps pose to government transparency.[11]

A university report based on available evidence could not reach a conclusion on the matter. The two-page executive summary says that Schwertner "refused to meet with" the investigating attorney and that "[Schwertner] has access to information that could allow a more definitive conclusion to this matter, but [Schwertner] is unwilling to share that information, and the University lacks authority to compel him to cooperate more fully.”[12]

Ross Ramey of the Texas Tribune wrote of the case: "The problem is that the investigation at UT didn’t reach any final conclusions. The investigator couldn’t prove Schwertner was at fault, but also couldn’t prove he was not. There is no evidence here to clear his name. In that way, it’s as though no investigation had taken place; Schwertner is in the same fix he was in after the allegations were known and before Johnny Sutton, a former U.S. attorney who is now in private practice, started digging around." [13]

Election history[edit]


Texas General Election, 2012: Senate District 5[14]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Charles J. Schwertner 182,554 77.14
Libertarian Jeffery Fox 54,107 22.86
Majority 128,447 54.28
Turnout 236,661
Republican hold


Texas General Election, 2010: House District 20[15]
Party Candidate Votes % ±
Republican Charles J. Schwertner 44,901 82.55
Libertarian David Floyd 9,490 17.45
Majority 35,411 65.1
Turnout 54,391
Republican hold


  1. ^ "State Senator Charles J. Schwertner's Statistics". The Texas Tribune. Retrieved 2013-05-29.
  2. ^ "Senator Charles J. Schwertner's Biography". Project Vote Smart. Retrieved 2013-05-29.
  3. ^ Services, Texas Senate Media. "The Texas State Senate: Senate Committee on Health & Human Services". Retrieved 2016-10-18.
  4. ^ Services, Texas Senate Media. "The Texas State Senate: District 5". Retrieved 2016-10-18.
  5. ^ Services, Texas Senate Media. "The Texas State Senate: District 5". Retrieved 2016-10-18.
  6. ^ "Texas Sunset Commission". Retrieved 2016-10-18.
  7. ^ Ratcliffe, RG (July 1, 2017). "The Best and Worst Legislators 2017". Texas Monthly. Retrieved September 10, 2018.
  8. ^ "Election Returns". Texas Secretary of State. November 6, 2018. Archived from the original on November 10, 2018. Retrieved November 11, 2018.
  9. ^ Walsh, Sean (October 8, 2018). "Confirmed: University of Texas investigating if Sen. Charles Schwertner sent lewd image". Austin American-Statesman. Retrieved October 10, 2018.
  10. ^ Najmabadi, Shannon (December 18, 2018). "Confirmed: UT-Austin says evidence "does not support a finding" that Charles Schwertner violated Title IX by sending lewd texts". Texas Tribune. Retrieved December 25, 2018.
  11. ^ Prazan, Phil (December 19, 2018). "Why was a Texas Senator using the burner app Hushed?". KXAN. Retrieved December 25, 2018.
  12. ^ Will Racke. "University of Texas concludes probe of state senator accused of sending lewd texts to student". Retrieved December 19, 2018.
  13. ^ Ross Ramey. "Analysis: More questions after #MeToo investigation of Texas Sen. Charles Schwertner". Texas Tribune. Retrieved December 25, 2018.
  14. ^ "2012 General Election Results". Retrieved 2013-05-29.
  15. ^ "2010 General Election Results". Retrieved 2013-05-29.

Texas House of Representatives
Preceded by
Steve Ogden
Texas State Senator from District 5 (Brazos, Freestone, Grimes, Leon, Limestone, Madison, Milam, Robertson, Walker, and Williamson counties)

Charles J. Schwertner
January 8, 2013–

Succeeded by
Preceded by
Dan M. Gattis
Texas State Representative from District 20 (then Milam and part of Williamson counties; now Burnet, Milam, and Williamson)

Charles J. Schwertner
January 11, 2011–January 8, 2013

Succeeded by
Marsha Farney