Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, Chair of the House Republican Conference, filed a formal ethics complaint against New York Supreme Court Judge Arthur Engoron for his “bizarre and biased behavior,” during the civil trial of former President Donald J. Trump.
According to Fox News, Stefanik issued a letter to the New York State Commission on Judicial Conduct expressing her concerns.
She wrote in part, “I write today to express my serious concerns about the inappropriate bias and judicial intemperance shown by Judge Arthur F. Engoron in New York’s lawsuit against President Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization.”
The New York Republican continued,
“This judge’s bizarre behavior has no place in our judicial system, where Judge Engoron is not honoring the defendant’s rights to due process and a fair trial.”
“These serious concerns are exacerbated by the fact that the defendant is the leading candidate for President of the United States, and it appears the judicial system is being politicized to affect the outcome of the campaign,” Stefanik wrote in the letter posted to X.
🚨🚨🚨 I just filed an official judicial complaint against Judge Arthur Engoron for his inappropriate bias and judicial intemperance in New York’s disgraceful lawsuit against President Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization.
Americans are sick and tired of the blatant… pic.twitter.com/5HRzSle2LV
— Elise Stefanik (@EliseStefanik) November 10, 2023
Before posting the entire text of the letter, she announced,
“I just filed an official judicial complaint against Judge Arthur Engoron for his inappropriate bias and judicial intemperance in New York’s disgraceful lawsuit against President Donald J. Trump and the Trump Organization.
Americans are sick and tired of the blatant corruption by radical Leftist judges in NY. All New Yorkers must speak out against the dangerous weaponized lawfare against President Trump.”
Stefanik gave several examples of the “clear judicial bias” exhibited by Engoron. She noted:
- “Last year, Judge Engoron told President Trump’s attorney that the former president is “just a bad guy” who Democrat New York Attorney General Letitia James “should go after as the chief law enforcement officer of the state.”
- “At the start of the trial, Judge Engoron infamously smiled and posed for the cameras.”
- “After the defendant won an appellate ruling against Judge Engoron on the appropriate statute of limitations in this case, the judge simply ignored the ruling.”
- “Judge Engoron entered summary judgment against the defendant before the trial even began, without witnesses, other evidence, and cross-examination. This, despite the fact there’s disputed material evidence–and there’s no victim of the defendant’s supposed fraud. Indeed, as the trial evidence has made clear, the defendant paid back the sophisticated Wall Street banks, on time, in full, with interest, as agreed.”
Stefanik also brought the proverbial receipts providing reports supporting each complaint. She also pointed out, as reported by multiple outlets, that Engoron and his staff members are “partisan Democrat donors,” in violation of the NY Rules of Judicial Conduct Section 100.5 which states they “shall refrain” from “making a contribution to a political organization.”
She adds, “Section 100.5 also stipulates that a “judge shall prohibit members of the judge’s staff” from contributing more than $500 “in the aggregate during any calendar year to all political campaigns for political office.” Allison Greenfield has served as Judge Engoron’s principal law clerk since 2019. In both 2022 and 2023, Greenfield donated in excess of $500 to political campaigns. In 2022 alone, Greenfield donated “$3,335 in political donations to Democrat candidates and causes.” She’s already given more than $1,000 in 2023 to campaigns.”
Stefanik noted that when Trump’s legal team brought this up to Judge Engoron, he responded by promptly issuing an illegal gag order against President Trump’s legal team as previously reported by Trending Politics. He later fined the former President $10,000 and threatened him with jail time for violating the gag order.
She also observed that in Section 100.2(A) the Rules of Conduct state, “A judge shall respect and comply with the law and shall act at all times in a manner that promotes public confidence in the integrity and impartiality of the judiciary,” writing that Engoron ” has grossly failed to do this.”
“This case is so much bigger than President Donald J. Trump. If Judge Engoron can railroad a billionaire New York businessman, a former President of the United States, and the leading presidential candidate, just imagine what he could do to all New Yorkers. Judge Engoron’s lawlessness sends an ominous and illegal warning to New York business owners: If New York judges don’t like your politics, they will destroy your business, the livelihood of your employees, and you personally. This Commission cannot let this continue.”
As noted by CNBC, Stefanik is not an attorney and has never been a member of the New York State Bar. Based upon the letter’s format she appears to have sent it in her capacity as a citizen of New York, given the absence of Congressional letterhead or title. The return address is also to a PO Box in Glens Falls, NY, rather than either of her Congressional offices.