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 February 20, 2024

Georgia judge will decide whether to remove Fani Willis from election interference case

The judge in Georgia is scheduled to hold a hearing on Thursday to determine whether or not to remove Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis from the state's case against former president Donald Trump for election interference.

The hearing is expected to center on specifics regarding Willis' personal connection with the special prosecutor she appointed, as AP News reported.

Last month, rumors started circulating regarding the case's potential outcome as soon as claims of an inappropriate romantic relationship between Willis and attorney Nathan Wade emerged.

The chaos has distracted Willis and her team, which is bad for the prosecution, and it could make the public lose faith in the case even if it doesn't torpedo the prosecution.

The Defense

The defense counsel who brought attention to the relationship initially is requesting that the judge reject the indictment and exclude Willis, Wade, and their offices from any further participation in the case due to the conflict of interest it poses.

Willis requested the judge to dismiss the applications seeking her disqualification without a hearing and acknowledged a "personal relationship" earlier this month. She argued it had no influence on the serious criminal accusations she is investigating.

The law says “disqualification can occur if evidence is produced demonstrating an actual conflict or the appearance of one,” Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee said during a hearing Monday.

Because he believes “it’s possible that the facts alleged by the defendant could result in a disqualification, I think an evidentiary hearing must occur to establish the record on those core allegations.”

Updates on the Case

The judge's YouTube channel and news sources will also broadcast the highly anticipated session live, as they have for other courtroom procedures involving the case. According to McAfee, it may drag on until Friday.

The ex-president has taken advantage of the relationship's exposure by calling Wade Willis' "lover" or "boyfriend" on multiple occasions in an effort to cast doubt on Willis' intentions and the case's validity, all while running for president again and facing three further criminal prosecutions.

Willis is a Democrat running for reelection this year, and other Republicans have joined the chorus, citing the allegations to demand punishment or probes into the Democrat.

Michael Roman, who worked for Trump's campaign and in the White House, was the first to submit the motion, but now Trump and multiple other defendants have joined.

Willis' History

Wade recruited Willis in November 2021 to oversee an investigation into whether Trump and others committed any crimes while trying to overturn his 2020 election loss in Georgia, according to Roman's motion. At the time, the two were intimately connected.

The inquiry culminated in the August indictment of 18 individuals, including Trump, who are accused of being involved in a vast unlawful plot to ensure Trump's continued presidency.

As a result of plea bargains, four of the accused have already admitted guilt. All fifteen defendants, including Trump, have entered not guilty pleas.

Written By:
Charlotte Tyler

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