Fani Willis disqualification hearing: Judge to rule within next 2 weeks

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis will hear the judges decision on if she should be disqualified from the Trump Georgia election interference case within the next two weeks. 

Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee made that announcement on Friday after hearing closing arguments from several lawyers involved in the racketeering case against former President Donald Trump and others.

The decision will come down to whether the judge believes Willis had a financial incentive for hiring special prosecutor Nathan Wade for the case. Willis and Wade admitted to a romantic relationship, but the timeframe of that relationship was the crux of the argument about if the relationship was improper. 


The case has drawn national attention, intertwining legal proceedings with questions of personal conduct.

Wills-Wade conflict of interest allegations

Fulton County Superior Court Judge Scott McAfee is deliberating over arguments that Willis' relationship with special prosecutor Nathan Wade presents a conflict of interest, potentially jeopardizing the integrity of one of the four criminal cases against Trump. 

Critics argue that the relationship undermines public confidence in the prosecution, while Willis' office counters that there is no evidence of professional or financial impropriety stemming from their personal connection.

The case has been marked by days of sensational testimony, focusing as much on the prosecutors' personal lives as on the allegations of election interference. 

The defense has accused Willis and Wade of dishonesty regarding the timeline of their relationship, raising concerns about the message their continued involvement in the case might send. 

This comes amid a backdrop of the former president and his allies using the situation to cast doubt on the legitimacy of the charges.


Willis' potential removal could significantly impact the sprawling legal battle against Trump, though it wouldn't automatically lead to the dismissal of charges. 

The proceedings have ventured into unexpected areas, including testimony from prominent political figures and discussions about personal vacations, highlighting the unusual nature of this legal challenge.

DA Fani Willis disqualification hearing: Legal perspective

With the 2024 presidential election approaching, the timing of the trial and its implications for Trump's candidacy loom large.

Darryl Cohen, a former Fulton County prosecutor, says it’s unclear if Judge McAfee will remove Willis from the case. "I put it at 50/50," Cohen said. "He has enough to keep her and enough to get rid of her."

"The defense has discredited her, she is certainly now under a microscope," Cohen said, adding that could hurt Willis in the minds of some potential jurors if she remains on the case. "Certainly, it could. Jurors don’t live under a rock," Cohen said.

Tom Church, a trial lawyer, says he doesn’t believe defense lawyers met the standard to get Willis removed. "I don’t think Fani Willis and her office are going to be disqualified. Ultimately, the judge is going to deny the motion," Church said. "They didn’t get the kind of bombshell testimony that they needed to win. But they did land some hard blows."

Church doesn’t think defense lawyers’ attempts to discredit Willis will taint her image with potential jurors. "Is there always a risk? Possibly," Church said. "With some time, with some distance from these salacious hearings, there will be more attention to the actual facts of this case."

If McAfee removes Willis from the case, it will go to what’s called the Prosecuting Attorney’s Council of Georgia. They would decide which DA would be handed the election interference case.

It is unclear how a new prosecutor would handle it if that happens.