Former Mayor of New York City and lawyer of President Donald Trump Rudy Giuliani may find himself at risk of being disbarred following an announcement by the New York State Bar Association that an inquiry will be launched into his recent behavior. The Association has received hundreds of complaints over Giuliani’s efforts to cast doubt on the results of the 2020 presidential election before votes were even cast and then undermining Joe Biden’s victory in an effort to secure a second term for Trump — including conducting court actions in multiple states without evidence. In every instance of court proceedings, the charges brought forth were summarily dismissed.
These efforts culminated in Washington D.C. on January 6, when supporters of the president took part in a violent uprising that saw them attack the U.S. Capitol. Prior to the violence, Giuliani addressed the crowd and continued to spread false claims of fraud in the 2020 election, as well as the Georgia U.S. Senate runoffs.
“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,” he told those gathered.
In the statement, the Association reiterated its responsibility to defend and protect the rule of law. Given Giuliani’s comments on January 6 and the previous actions that warranted complaints, NYSBA President Scott M. Karson has launched an inquiry to determine if there was a violation of a bylaw warranting the former mayor’s removal from the Association’s membership rolls. The specific bylaw is “no person who advocates the overthrow of the government of the United States, or of any state, territory or possession thereof, or of any political subdivision therein, by force or other illegal means, shall be a member of the Association.”
The statement went on to describe Giuliani’s words as encouragement for Trump supporters who didn’t believe in the election results to take matters into their own hands and deny the peaceful transition of power, with the storming of the Capitol called an “abhorrent incident” and “nothing short of an attempted coup.”
“We cannot stand idly by and allow those intent on rending the fabric of our democracy to go unchecked,” the statement concluded, emphasizing that the decision was not made lightly.
The Association also made it clear that Giuliani will be granted due process during the inquiry and he will be given the opportunity to explain and defend his words and actions.