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Georgia ‘Get Trump’ Lawfare Could Be Tossed If Appeals Court Rules Willis Disqualified Herself

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The Georgia Court of Appeals will consider former President Donald Trump’s appeal of a ruling that allows disgraced Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis to remain principal prosecutor in the state election case. If Trump prevails, the case against the presumptive GOP presidential nominee could end as Democrats’ multi-case lawfare campaign continues to fall apart six months before the election.

In March, Fulton County Judge Scott McAfee determined Willis, the embattled prosecutor who faced disqualification for an inappropriate relationship with Special Prosecutor Nathan Wade, could continue to lead the state effort to imprison Trump for opposing election changes in 2020. The judge ruled Willis could remain on the case as long as Wade stepped down from the probe after the government paid more than $650,000 to Wade’s law firm over two years. Willis and Wade allegedly spent money ostensibly meant for Trump’s prosecution on lavish vacations to the Bahamas, Aruba, Belize, and Napa Valley.

Defendants in Willis’s politicized Georgia show trials earlier moved to have the Fulton County DA removed from the case, alleging an inappropriate affair with Wade before Willis’s office hired him. Willis and Wade denied the allegations. The district attorney testified in February that she reimbursed Wade for her share of the costs incurred on their trips together. When pressed in court on proof of reimbursement, Willis declared, “The proof is what I just told you.”

McAfee, who donated to Willis’s 2020 campaign, ruled the district attorney’s reimbursement claims “may be unusual and the lack of any documentary corroboration understandably concerning” but concluded the evidence “did not establish [Willis’] receipt of a material financial benefit as a result of her decision to hire and engage in a romantic relationship with Wade.”

The judge went on to allow Trump and eight co-defendants to appeal, which the Georgia Court of Appeals accepted Wednesday. The decision to hear the former president’s plea to remove the lead prosecutor is likely to significantly delay the proceedings for a second time just months before Election Day. In August, Willis charged the Republican presidential candidate with 41 charges over his 2020 election concerns. The Fulton County judge dropped six of the charges in March.

The decision by the Georgia Court of Appeals marks another win for Trump this week against the scorched-earth lawfare campaign waged to keep the Democrats’ chief political opponent from reclaiming the White House this fall. On Tuesday, U.S. District Court Judge Aileen Cannon indefinitely postponed Special Counsel Jack Smith’s prosecution of Trump’s alleged mishandling of classified documents. The trial date was previously set for May 20 but now may not take place until well after the November election after prosecutors admitted to tampering with evidence.

“The Court also determines that finalization of a trial date at this juncture — before resolution of the myriad and interconnected pre-trial and CIPA [Classified Information Procedures Act] issues remaining and forthcoming — would be imprudent and inconsistent with the Court’s duty to fully and fairly consider the various pending pre-trial motions before the Court, critical CIPA issues, and additional pretrial and trial preparations necessary to present this case to a jury,” wrote Judge Cannon.


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