Dec 15, 2022 - Politics & Policy

D.C. attorney disciplinary counsel finds Giuliani violated ethics rules

Former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani is seen in July 2021. Photo: Matias J. Ocner/Miami Herald/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

An attorney disciplinary counsel found Thursday that Rudy Giuliani violated the rules of professional conduct by making false election fraud claims in 2020.

Driving the news: The disciplinary hearing committee of the D.C. Bar’s Board on Professional Responsibility said that Giuliani, the former mayor of New York City and top federal prosecutor in Manhattan, is liable for professional sanctions for filing a lawsuit in Pennsylvania trying to block the certification of the 2020 presidential election results, CNN reports.

Of note: The finding is preliminary and non-binding.

What's next: Giuliani's legal team will file a brief on his defense and the hearing committee will issue a final report and recommendation.

  • The matter will then go to the Board on Professional Responsibility, which will issue its own recommendation.
  • The case will then go to the D.C. Court of Appeals and the court will issue the final order of discipline.

What they're saying: Giuliani’s conduct "calls for only one sanction, and that’s the sanction of disbarment," Hamilton "Phil" Fox III, the head prosecuting attorney for the D.C. Bar’s Office of Disciplinary Counsel, said to the board per the Washington Post.

  • "What Mr. Giuliani did was use his law license to undermine the legitimacy of a presidential election, to undermine the basic premise of the democratic system that we all live in, that has been in place since the 1800s in this country," Fox said.

The other side: Giuliani has maintained he did nothing wrong and that his role in the lawsuit was minimal, per the Post.

  • Giuliani told members of the board that other attorneys were responsible for the language in the lawsuit as he had little time to investigate the allegations before filing it.

Flashback: Giuliani was suspended from practicing law in New York last year for making false statements about the 2020 election.

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