New York State has suspended the law license of Rudolph Giuliani for what it claims are “…demonstrably false and misleading statements to courts, lawmakers and the public at large in his capacity as lawyer for former President Donald J. Trump and the Trump campaign in connection with Trump’s failed effort at reelection in 2020.” (In re: Rudolph W. Giuliani, Supreme Court of the State of New York, Appellate Division, First Judicial Department, Motion No. 2021-00491, Case No. 2021-00506, p. 2). Although the suspension is temporary, (until Giuliani gets a “post suspension hearing”) it is a very, very big deal. In the words of the court itself, “Interim suspension is a serious remedy, available only in situations where it is immediately necessary to protect the public from the respondent’s violation of the Rules.” (Id at p.4) The court goes on to to conclude that interim suspension in this case is warranted because,
“…the seriousness of respondent’s uncontroverted misconduct cannot be overstated. This country is being torn apart by continued attacks on the legitimacy of the 2020 election and of our current president, Joseph R. Biden… One only has to look at the ongoing present public discord over the 2020 election, which erupted into violence, insurrection and death on January 6, 2021 at the U.S. Capitol, to understand the extent of the damage that can be done when the public is misled by false information about the elections.” (Id at pp30-31)
Rudolph Giuliani is an institution in American Jurisprudence. As a young federal prosecutor from the prestigious Southern District of New York, Giuliani is the man responsible for taking down the ‘five families’ of the Mafia back in the 1980s. In fact he helped the federal government shape the relatively new and untested RICO laws that he ultimately uses to accomplish that task. In 1993 he became the mayor of New York City, a posiiton he held for eight years, taking that city out of the “bad old days,” laying the ground for New York to transform into the once-again thriving metropolis that it has since become, at least before Deblasio began to unravel all that progress. Americans outside of New York got to know Mayor Giuliani after 9/11, as he became “America’s Mayor.” He was named Person of the Year for 2001 by Time Magazine, and was even given an honorary knighthood in 2002 by Queen Elizabeth of the United Kingdom. Rudy Giuliani transcended political lines; he was a beloved American figure. Those days are over.
None of this places him above the law or entitles him to preferential treatment by the New York State Attorney Grievance Committee, however; it damn sure means he ought not be singled out for treatment that is substantially ‘less than’ what anyone else would receive if accused of attorney misconduct. And that’s the problem here… the New York Courts are playing politics with the Bar.
I will refrain from attesting to the veracity of Giuliani’s statements here but I will say that false and misleading statements are made by attorneys at every hour of every day. Indeed when answering the question, “how does the defendant plea?” – most attorneys knowingly make a false statement to the court when they answer, “not guilty, your honor.” More to the point is the absence of any action taken by the New York State Attorney Grievance Committee against any of the hundreds of lawyers who played a key role in falsely accusing a sitting President of being an active Russian spy – arguably the greatest national disgrace of our lifetimes. What about the attorneys at the office of Letitia James, Attorney General of New York? Those lawyers are engaged in a blatantly political fishing expedition of Donald Trump and the Trump Foundation, purely for the purpose of political gain – they are not even bothering to pretend it’s anything else. These examples are not sufficiently damaging to the public interest? They don’t “…tarnish the reputation of the entire legal profession and its mandate to act as a trusted and essential part of the machinery of justice”? (Id at 31)
Ok – If that’s not enough, consider the two would-be cop-killers pictured below.
These two individuals are both licensed attorneys in the State of New York. Colinford Mattis, 32 (left) was admitted to practice in 2018, and Urooj Rahman, 31 (right) was admitted to practice in 2019, less than a year before the pair was arrested for throwing a Molotov Cocktail into a police car during a BLM riot in Brooklyn on May 30th of last year. They were subsequently charged in federal court with arson, conspiracy and use of explosives for the alleged assault – a detention memo stated they had tried to pass the explosives out to other demonstrators. They were caught on camera.
Their case is still ongoing as they are reportedly trying to hammer out a plea deal with federal prosecutors. To date, no disciplinary action has been initiated against them – presumably the New York State Attorney Grievance Committee does not feel these individuals present the same level of “immediate threat to the public” that Rudolph Giuliani does.
That’s the point here; I will repeat that last line below before concluding… let it sink in.