President Trump’s personal attorney Rudy Giuliani is in a lot of trouble. After remarks he made recently endorsing “trial by combat,” several Democratic lawmakers are trying to get the former New York Mayor stripped of his license to practice law.
Giuliani’s comments were made ahead of Trump supporters trespassing into the US Capitol building last week, which resulted in five deaths including an unarmed Trump supporter shot by police and a police officer killed with a fire extinguisher.
Will Giuliani be Kicked Out?
For his part in inciting the violence before the Capitol incident, Rep. Mondaire Jones and Rep. Ted Lieu want Giuliani kicked out of the Bar Association. They have written to request that Giuliani be removed.
The New York Bar Association says the matter is under investigation and that Giuliani may end up being kicked out. This wouldn’t be the same thing as disbarring him, but it would basically mean that Giuliani is persona non grata as a member of his own state’s main legal body.
Jones and Lieu say that Giuliani was a key part of what they call the “violent uprising” on the Capitol and as such he should no longer practice law. The NY Bar Association president Scott Karson said they have received “hundreds” of complaints about Giuliani’s involvement in fighting the election results and revving people up to resist Joe Biden’s win.
Giuliani has been one of Trump’s biggest supporters and been extremely loyal, but he also hasn’t had that much success in defending Trump on the news or in real life, often putting emotional rhetoric ahead of facts and logical reasoning.
On Wednesday ahead of the storming of the Capitol, Giuliani basically encouraged people to take a risk and go for it before they marched on the building, saying:
“If we’re wrong, we will be made fools of, but if we’re right a lot of them will go to jail. Let’s have trial by combat!”
On Friday, Rep. @TedLieu and I wrote asking the NYS Bar to disbar Rudy Giuliani, who helped incite last week’s violence at the Capitol. We are pleased the NYS Bar Association has moved to remove him.
We reiterate our call for the NYS Bar to revoke Giuliani’s law license. https://t.co/jVELVBOw2R
— Mondaire Jones (@MondaireJones) January 11, 2021
Could Giuliani Be Disbarred?
The NY Bar Association can only remove Giuliani, and does not have the power to take away his law license. But if he is ultimately removed it would be a huge downside on his four decades of practicing law. The bar association hasn’t kicked out anyone who hasn’t been disbarred since 1940.
In his time as Trump’s attorney and before, Giuliani has been involved in a lot of funny business, including hunting around in Ukraine to try to find dirt on the Bidens and has consistently failed to prove Trump’s case of election fraud in court, including when he appeared as chief counsel in the Pennsylvania case brought by Team Trump.
As for the NY Bar Association, it definitely seems they are leaning toward getting rid of Giuliani, which would essentially leave him as a no man’s land rogue lawyer.
“Mr. Giuliani’s words quite clearly were intended to encourage Trump supporters unhappy with the election’s outcome to take matters into their own hands. Their subsequent attack on the Capitol was nothing short of an attempted coup, intended to prevent the peaceful transition of power,” Karson’s statement reads.
“This decision is historic for NYSBA, and we have not made it lightly. We cannot stand idly by and allow those intent on rending the fabric of our democracy to go unchecked.”
Giuliani likely wouldn’t care much about being kicked out of the bar association and he’s already 78 anyway. But it would be an unfortunate conclusion to the career of a man many Americans still remember fondly for his role in rallying the country after 9/11 and helping improve New York City during his time as mayor.