ATLANTA — In a dense, 24-page response, Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis asked a judge to reject former President Donald Trump’s demand that she be removed from the case and that evidence uncovered by the special purpose grand jury be suppressed.
Willis said there’s no basis in Georgia law to have her removed from investigating or prosecuting the case, and no basis to have that evidence suppressed from the public and from a courtroom
Channel 2′s Richard Elliot obtained the document late Monday afternoon. In it, she basically says Trump and his attorneys could have challenged her authority two years ago when she empaneled the special grand jury but didn’t.
In March, Trump’s attorneys filed a 485-page motion demanding her removal and demanding that every bit of evidence uncovered by the special purpose grand jury be quashed, expunged, and suppressed.
“The whole world has watched the process of the special purpose grand jury and what they have witnessed was a process that was confusing, flawed and, at times, blatantly unconstitutional,” the motion said.
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At the time, Elliot asked Georgia State University law professor Clark Cunningham what he thought about that motion. It wasn’t much.
“Well, my initial impression is that this is really a press release dressed up as a legal filing. And in some ways, I don’t think we need to take it very seriously at this point,” Cunningham said.
In her response, Willis didn’t think Trump’s attorneys had much legal ground to get that evidence suppressed.
“This means that a special purpose grand jury’s authority to craft a report is broad, but it does not follow that it is unconstitutionally vague,” Willis said in the filing.
Also on Monday, attorneys for media intervenors, led by WSB-TV and the Atlanta Journal-Constitution agreed.
In their own response, they said suppressing that evidence would itself be unconstitutional.
“Not only is such a remedy unsupported by any legal basis, it would be starkly at odds with the principles of this nation and this state,” the motion said.
Elliot reached out to two of the former president’s attorneys for comment about Willis’ filing.
Trump’s three Georgia attorneys, Drew Findling, Jennifer Little and Marissa Goldberg, say they will ask the court for time to file a response brief.
“The State’s reply was primarily procedural in nature and failed to address several of the critical substantive issues which were discussed at length in our brief and exhibits. Accordingly, tomorrow morning we will be asking the Court for time to file a response brief,” the attorney’s said.
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