AUSTIN, Texas (AP) — A Texas appeals court has dismissed a billionaire’s defamation lawsuit against Democrat Beto O’Rouke that was brought over his criticism of a $1 million campaign contribution to Republican Gov. Greg Abbott. The ruling Friday by the Third Court of Appeals in Austin comes more than a year after O’Rourke repeatedly made critical remarks about the donation by Kelcy Warren during a failed run for governor. Warren is chairman of Energy Transfer, a pipeline company that reported billions of dollars in earnings after a catastrophic winter storm sent natural gas prices soaring in Texas. The court ruled that a reasonable person would view O’Rourke’s comments as hyperbole that is commonplace in political campaigns.
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