Nathan Wade

BREAKING: Judge Rules Fani Willis Can Stay On Trump Case—If Nathan Wade Steps Aside

Great! Let's get on with the trial now!

A judge has ruled that Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis can continue prosecution in the Donald Trump Georgia election interference case—if the special prosecutor she admitted having a romantic relationship with drops out. 

Judge Scott McAfee said Willis’ relationship with Nathan Wade was a conflict of interest in the racketeering case. One must leave the case for it to continue.

“The established record now highlights a significant appearance of impropriety that infects the current structure of the prosecution team — an appearance that must be removed through the State’s selection of one of two options,” McAfee wrote in his 23-page ruling, issued March 15. 

Prosecution in the case halted after Trump’s co-defended Michael Roman issued a probe into Willis and Wade’s relationship. Both attorneys faced grueling questions during a three-day hearing as defense attorneys attempted to prove that Willis benefited financially from lavish vacations after hiring Wade.

However, during Willis’ emotional testimony, she issued a reminder. “You’re confused. You think I’m on trial,” Willis told defense attorney Ashleigh Merchant, according to ABC News. “These people are on trial for trying to steal an election in 2020. I’m not on trial, no matter how hard you try to put me on trial.”

McAfee’s decision is a middle ground for both parties. While Trump and his allies argued the entire district attorney’s office should be thrown off the case due to the relationship, Willis still has grounds to prosecute in this historic case to indict Trump and his co-defendants on racketeering and other charges, arguing they conducted a months-long conspiracy to overturn President Joe Biden’s 2020 election victory. 

While “reasonable members of the public could easily be left to wonder whether the financial exchanges have continued,” McAfee said he didn’t find the main witnesses credible to prove any conflict, including Wade’s former divorce lawyer Terrence Bradley.

Bradley sent text messages to suggest the duo’s relationship began earlier than the prosecutors’ claims. McAfee said he wouldn’t put “any stock” on the texts as Bradley said the texts were speculation and not based on actual facts. 

“His inconsistencies, demeanor, and generally non-responsive answers left far too brittle a foundation upon which to build any conclusions,” McAfee wrote. 

But Willis’ legal woes are far from over. She faces threats of contempt from the U.S. House Committee. Chairman Jim Jordan (R-OH) issued a subpoena, dated Feb. 2, claiming Willis “failed to comply voluntarily” with their requests for documents related to her office’s receipt and use of U.S. Department of Justice grants.

Jordan is also accusing the DA of firing an employee who attempted to interrupt the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office from using a federal grant for outside purposes like travel, computers, and “swag” instead of creating a Center of Youth Empowerment and Gang Prevention.

The Republican congressman claims “a whistleblower has come forth” with receipts of mismanagement of alleged federal grant dollars.” A spokesperson from Willis’ office has called the allegations false and that the whistleblower was from a previous administration.