A panel of attorneys in Washington, D.C., has recommended that Donald Trump ally Rudy Giuliani lose his license to practice law in the district because of his efforts to overturn the results of the 2020 presidential election.
In a report released Friday, three attorneys unanimously recommended that Giuliani be disbarred for pushing a federal lawsuit in Pennsylvania after the 2020 election. The lawsuit claimed civil rights violations based on alleged voting improprieties and targeted election boards of seven counties that had voted for President Joe Biden.
“He violated Pennsylvania [Rule of Processional Conduct] 3.1 by filing a lawsuit seeking to change the result of the 2020 presidential election when he had no factual basis, and consequently no legitimate legal grounds, to do so,” the recommendation said. “His prosecution of the lawsuit also seriously undermined the administration of justice[.]”
The panel continued (citations omitted):
The right to vote is the “essence of a democratic society.” Respondent’s frivolous lawsuit attempted unjustifiably and without precedent to disenfranchise hundreds of thousands of Pennsylvania voters, and ultimately sought to undermine the results of the 2020 presidential election. He claimed massive election fraud but had no evidence of it. By prosecuting that destructive case Mr. Giuliani, a sworn officer of the Court, forfeited his right to practice law. He should be disbarred.
The attorneys found the evidence Giuliani offered in his defense was “fundamentally vague, speculative, or facially incredible,” and they “completely fail to demonstrate” that fraud had occurred. The panel also found that his “argument that he did not have time fully to investigate his case before filing it is singularly unimpressive.”
Throughout the 38-page memo, the panel repeatedly emphasized the destructive impact of what the attorneys felt was an unprecedented effort to undermine democracy.
“It was unparalleled in its destructive purpose and effect,” the filing says. “He sought to disrupt a presidential election and persists in his refusal to acknowledge the wrong he has done. For these reasons, we unanimously recommend that Mr. Giuliani be disbarred.”
The recommendation is not a final ruling; it will be up to the D.C. Court of Appeals to ultimately decide whether to revoke Giuliani’s license to practice in the district.
The filing is the latest in a long line of headaches for the man once known as “America’s Mayor.” Indeed, the panel acknowledged Giuliani’s role as mayor of New York during the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks that brought down the World Trade Center, as well as his career as a federal prosecutor.
“We have considered in mitigation Mr. Giuliani’s conduct following the September 11 attacks as well as his prior service in the Justice Department and as Mayor of New York City,” the panel says. “But all of that happened long ago. The misconduct here sadly transcends all his past accomplishments.”
Giuliani’s license has been suspended in the district since July 2021 based on a New York court’s finding that he made “demonstrably false and misleading” statements about alleged voter fraud in the election. He is also facing a sexual abuse lawsuit from a former employee as well as a defamation lawsuit by voting machine company Smartmatic.
Giuliani is one of several high-profile Trump attorneys to face professional consequences for pursuing litigation on the basis of conspiracy theories and false statements after the 2020 election. Attorney and law school professor John Eastman, who authored the so-called “coup memo,” is currently facing disbarment hearings in California, and Lin Wood surrendered his law license as the State Bar of Georgia considered disciplinary action for his participation in the litigation. Sidney Powell, a Texas attorney who served on the so-called “Kraken” legal team — whose lawsuits failed to gain any traction whatsoever — has been ordered to pay thousands of dollars in sanctions.
In a statement issued Friday, Giuliani advisor Ted Goodman accused the panel of playing politics and referred ominously to “permanent” corruption in the nation’s capital.
“The DC Court of Appeals Board on Professional Responsibility’s Ad Hoc Hearing Committee is persecuting Mayor Rudy Giuliani on behalf of the permanent corrupt regime in Washington,” Goodman said in a statement. He added that the disciplinary action is “part of a larger effort to deny President Trump effective counsel by persecuting Mayor Giuliani” and demanded that “rank-and-file” members of the D.C. Bar defend Giuliani “against this great injustice.”
Read the panel’s recommendation, via CNN, below.
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DC attorneys recommend disbarment for Rudy Giuliani
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