The prosecution of former President Donald Trump in the Georgia election interference case is facing scrutiny as lead prosecutor Nathan Wade is accused of having an affair with Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis.
Wade’s appointment as the lead prosecutor in the Georgia election interference case in 2021 raised concerns due to his limited experience in handling such high-profile cases. Willis, having the largest staff of any judicial circuit in Georgia, opted for Wade, who had previously worked on misdemeanors. Over two years later, the legitimacy of Wade’s role is being questioned, with allegations of a romantic involvement with Willis, CNN reported.
One of Trump’s co-defendants has alleged in court papers that Wade used funds from the district attorney’s office, intended for his work on the case, for extravagant vacations with Willis. While the filing lacks direct evidence of their romantic involvement, Willis has been served with a subpoena to appear at a deposition in Wade’s divorce proceedings, adding fuel to the controversy.
Trump and his co-defendant are arguing for the removal of Wade, Willis, and the entire district attorney’s office from the case. The appearance of a conflict of interest could potentially impact Willis’ ability to secure a conviction before a jury, prompting concerns about the case’s credibility, say some experts.
The allegations against Willis and Wade come from Michael Roman, a former Trump 2020 campaign official indicted over the fake electors plot in Georgia. The court filing accuses Willis of potentially committing acts to defraud the public and questions the financial arrangement with Wade.
Ashleigh Merchant, the attorney representing Roman in the 127-page filing, claimed that Wade, despite a “lack of relevant experience,” has received approximately $650,000 in legal fees since assuming the role. The filing asserts that this compensation constitutes a “self-serving arrangement,” ABC News reported.
Amidst the allegations, Republican Rep. Jim Jordan has sent a letter requesting documents related to the Georgia investigation. The Republicans are leveraging the situation to undermine the credibility of Willis’ case, adding another layer of complexity to the unfolding controversy.
“If I had a personal relationship, I probably would have not done it,” former DeKalb County District Attorney Robert James told CNN, “not because there’s anything inappropriate about it, only because people will take it, twist it and make it look like there’s something inappropriate going on.”
He added, “It’s, just politically, is not something that I think is wise.”
Nathan Wade, screenshot, Fox News, https://www.fox5atlanta.com/video/1396021/Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis, April 19, 2023, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Brynn Anderson, File)