Jun 24, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Rudy Giuliani suspended from practicing law in New York

Rudy Giuliani

Photo: Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Rudy Giuliani has been suspended from practicing law in the state of New York due to his false statements about the 2020 election, according to a court filing.

Driving the news: A New York court ruled that Giuliani made "demonstrably false and misleading statements to courts, lawmakers and the public at large in his capacity as lawyer for former President Donald J. Trump."

  • "These false statements were made to improperly bolster respondent’s narrative that due to widespread voter fraud, victory in the 2020 United States presidential election was stolen from his client," the court wrote.
  • "We conclude that respondent’s conduct immediately threatens the public interest and warrants interim suspension from the practice of law, pending further proceedings before the Attorney Grievance Committee."

Zoom in: The court examined a number of instances in which Giuliani made false statements about alleged election fraud in Pennsylvania, Arizona, Georgia, and Michigan. Each were found to be in violation of various provisions of the New York Rules of Professional Conduct.

What they're saying: The Attorney Grievance Committee, which brought the complaint against Giuliani, "contends that respondent’s misconduct directly inflamed tensions that bubbled over into the events of January 6, 2021 in this nation’s Capitol," the court notes.

  • "Respondent’s response is that no causal nexus can be shown between his conduct and those events. We need not decide any issue of “causal nexus” to understand that the falsehoods themselves cause harm."
  • "This event only emphasizes the larger point that the broad dissemination of false statements, casting doubt on the legitimacy of thousands of validly cast votes, is corrosive to the public’s trust in our most important democratic institutions."

The big picture: Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City and top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, led a nationwide campaign to overturn the results of the 2020 election in the wake of Joe Biden's victory.

  • He is currently facing multibillion-dollar defamation lawsuits from Smartmatic and Dominion Voting Systems, two voting-machine companies that were the target of baseless conspiracy theories from Giuliani and other Trump allies.
  • Giuliani is also under criminal investigation by the Southern District of New York — the office he used to run — for his dealings with Ukraine.

Flashback: June 24 is the 35th anniversary of the disbarment of another high-profile former Trump lawyer — Roy Cohn (h/t CNN's Terrence Burlij).

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