Fani Willis court filing confirms romantic relationship with lawyer on Trump case but denies conflict
Fulton County DA Fani Willis acknowledges romantic relationship with lawyer Nathan Wade, denies financial conflicts, and refuses to step down.
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis' lawyers have acknowledged that she had a romantic relationship with attorney Nathan Wade, whom she appointed to lead the prosecution of Donald Trump in Georgia, but they have strongly refuted allegations of financial conflicts and the assertion that she should be disqualified from the case.
In a court filing, Wade stated that he and Willis developed a personal relationship in 2022, in addition to their professional association and friendship. He also stated that he has no financial interest in the outcome of the election interference case or in the conviction of any defendant. Willis' attorneys responded to the allegations by condemning the "incredibly inappropriate efforts to intrude into opposing counsel's personal life with little to no evidentiary value."
The response comes after Trump's co-defendant, Michael Roman, alleged that Willis had an improper relationship with Wade, paid him over $650,000, and benefited financially from the relationship. Roman's lawyer argued that Willis and her entire office should be disqualified from prosecuting the case and that all charges against Roman should be dropped. However, the filing provided no supporting evidence of the claims.
Willis' office filed a response to the motion, arguing that her relationship with Wade has no bearing on the case or her ability to prosecute it. They assert that the relationship developed long after Wade was hired to lead the prosecution and that it poses no conflict of interest under Georgia law. The filing also includes an exhibit highlighting some of the threats sent to Willis, including vulgar handwritten messages that curse her with racist slurs and sexual invective.
The case has been plunged into turmoil, with Republicans in the Georgia State Legislature voting to create a special panel to investigate Willis's conduct, and calls mounting for her to step aside. However, the DA's office has argued that a hearing on the matter isn't necessary because the law has not been broken.
It has been more than three weeks since Roman and his lawyer filed the motion, and the radio silence from Willis and her team created a void that was filled with brutal media coverage and calls for more investigations or for Willis' resignation. Sources close to Willis say she was badly rattled in the aftermath of the revelations, but she has steadied and is prepared to fight it out in court and eventually in the public arena, if necessary.