These 'Stop the Steal' lawyers are still going strong in MAGA World: report
Never before in U.S. history had a president who lost an election and falsely claimed that he didn’t have so many attorneys who were willing to be a mouthpiece for his conspiracy theories.
But journalist Heidi Przybyla, in a report for Politico published on July 5, stresses that for some “Stop the Steal” lawyers, business is good.
Giuliani’s license to practice law has been suspended in New York State as well as Washington, D.C. But Przybyla notes that Michigan-based “Stop the Steal” lawyer Judi Haller is thriving.
“Juli Haller was part of Donald Trump’s legal brigade in Michigan, filing a lawsuit alongside the ubiquitous Sidney Powell that claimed absentee vote counts were likely manipulated by a computer algorithm developed by allies of deceased Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chávez,” Przybyla explains. “The lawsuit was quickly deemed baseless, and she was among nine attorneys ordered by a federal judge to pay the city of Detroit and state of Michigan’s legal fees and referred for possible disbarment. In a blistering rebuke, Judge Linda V. Parker called it a ‘historic and profound abuse of the judicial process.’”
Przybyla continues, “But unlike Rudy Giuliani, whose law license was suspended in New York and Washington, D.C., for championing similar cases — or Haller’s own co-counsel, Powell, whose law license is at risk in Texas — Haller is going strong. She has gained a robust client roster that includes two alleged members of the far-right vigilante group the Oath Keepers who are accused of fueling the January 6, 2021, attack on the U.S. Capitol.”
Przybyla stresses that Haller is hardly the only “Stop the Steal” lawyer who has become a “go-to attorney for MAGA extremists.”
“In total, at least 16 lawyers who represented plaintiffs in five federal lawsuits promoting Trump’s baseless election fraud claims in the key battlegrounds of Michigan, Georgia, Wisconsin and Arizona remain in good standing or have no record of disciplinary action with their respective bar associations or licensing authorities, according to a Politico review,” Przybyla reports. “Fourteen of them have since engaged in additional work in support of the election fraud conspiracies or conspiracists behind Trump’s attempt to remain in power despite losing the election to President Joe Biden. These include defending accused January 6 rioters, consulting for partisan election ‘audits’ or partaking in advocacy or legal cases sowing doubts about the integrity of the nation’s elections, Politico found.”
One attorney who refused to promote the Big Lie was, ironically, former U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr. As much of a Trump enabler as Barr was during most of his time as attorney general, promoting Trump’s false claim that the 2020 election was stolen from him was a line that he was unwilling to cross. Barr bluntly described the Big Lie as “bullshit,” maintaining that there was zero evidence that now-President Joe Biden didn’t win the 2020 election fairly.
But many other pro-Trump attorneys were more than happy to cross a line that even Barr wouldn’t cross.
Attorney David Fink, according to Przybyla, is “leading the charge” to get “Stop the Steal” attorneys disbarred in Michigan.
Fink told Politico, “These lawyers have to be stopped from practicing law. It’s that simple. They disregarded their oath, they told lies to the court, and they spread the ‘Big Lie.’”
Another person pushing for accountability for “Stop the Steal” attorneys is David Levine, who is part of the Alliance for Securing Democracy.
Levine told Politico, “If these folks aren’t held accountable, they’ll feel emboldened to continue to engage in actions that not only erode trust in the legal profession and integrity of elections, but endanger lives of the American people…. We saw, in 2020, how false election information could not only fuel an insurrection, but cause bodily harm and loss of lives. After Watergate, we saw the legal profession be at the forefront of ethics reform. It’s dramatically different from what we’re seeing here.”
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