Fani Willis Refuses To Testify Before Republican-Led Senate Committee Over Misconduct Claims

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis will not cooperate with Georgia’s Republican-led special Senate committee. On May 6, Willis revealed that she will not testify before the committee which is investigating her for possible misconduct. 

Willis appeared at the historic Big Bethel AME Church on Auburn Ave where she received endorsement by several religious leaders who are supporting her for re-election. During a press conference held outside of the church, Willis revealed that she would participate in any hearings presented by the Senate committee. 

“I will not appear to anything that is unlawful,” Willis said, “And I have not broken the law in any way. I’ve said it, and I’ll say it amongst these leaders: I’m sorry that folks get pissed off that everybody gets treated evenly.”

Republican Sen. Bill Cowsert of Athens serves as chair on the committee which is looking into Willis’ relationship with special prosecutor Nathan Wade.  

The committee has no power to reprimand Willis, but the findings could inform legislative actions, including the enactment or amendment of laws and adjustments to state appropriations. 

The entire ordeal involving Willis and Wade began in early January when Ashleigh Merchant, the lawyer for Trump’s co-defendant Michael Roman, issued a motion to have Roman’s charges be dismissed, citing that Willis’ alleged personal relationship with Nathan Wade should disqualify her from continuing to prosecute the case. She claimed that Willis benefited from the salary by engaging in an intimate relationship and going on vacations with Wade. 

After Willis initially attempted to have the misconduct hearing dismissed, Judge McAfee set a date for the hearing to be held in February. 

Willis was able to avoid testifying in a divorce hearing after Wade reached a temporary settlement in his divorce of Joycelyn Wade. In court filings, Willis revealed that she had a personal relationship with Wade, but said there was no conflict of interest when it came to the Trump RICO case. The two revealed that they did not engage in a personal relationship until 2022. They also claimed that at no point were funds misused to enhance their lifestyle. 

On the day after Valentine’s Day, the misconduct hearing took place and served as legal entertainment for a national audience.

During her fiery testimony, Willis provided details of the relationship and when it started. This came after a former acquaintance, Robin Yeartie, claimed through testimony that she saw Willis and Wade kissing in 2019. 

Willis made it a point to highlight the real issue during her testimony by saying, “These people are on trial for trying to steal an election in 2020,” Willis said, pointing to the defense table. “I’m not on trial no matter how hard you try to put me on trial.”

Indeed, the pointless digging of a rabbit hole into Willis’ romantic relationship became the focus as Trump was able to buy more time as we come closer to Election Day 2024. Trump’s legal woes could pause or go away if he’s re-elected. 

One month after Willis’ viral testimony, Judge McAfee ruled that there was no evidence that Willis benefitted from a relationship with Wade. However, he ruled that Willis or Wade would have to step down, and of course, Wade sent his resignation within hours. 

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