The Georgia Senate has passed SR 465, a resolution establishing a special committee to investigate allegations of misconduct by Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis. The resolution aims to address concerns regarding Willis’ handling of cases related to the 2020 Presidential Election.
The resolution cites various forms of alleged misconduct by DA Willis, including the employment of a special assistant district attorney with whom she is alleged to have had a romantic relationship. This alleged relationship, if proven, could signify a conflict of interest and a misuse of taxpayer funds.
The Senate’s vote on the resolution concluded with 30 votes in favor and 19 against.
H.R. 872 Articles of Impeachment against Fulton County DA Fani Willis have just been introduced in the Georgia Senate.
— Laura Loomer (@LauraLoomer) January 26, 2024
The Senate Special Committee on Investigations is tasked with a comprehensive legislative investigation into these allegations. The committee is authorized to issue subpoenas, compel witness testimonies, and enforce compliance. This includes the power to investigate the potential misuse of public funds and examine the legal processes for appointing special assistant district attorneys.
State Senator Brandon Beach, a Republican from Alpharetta, expressed his concerns on the Senate floor prior to the vote on Friday. He stated, “I am deeply troubled by the poor judgment of our D.A., Fani Willis,” and went on to add, “I believe this scheme … was a fraud against the court and a fraud against the taxpayer.”
The committee will consist of no more than nine members, including at least three from the minority party. The Senate Committee on Assignments will appoint the members and select a chairperson. The committee is empowered with various investigative tools, such as administering oaths, calling witnesses, and demanding documents.
The allegations against DA Willis have raised concerns about the integrity of the justice administration in Georgia. If these allegations are proven true, it could lead to significant changes in state laws, particularly those governing the appointment and compensation of special assistant district attorneys. Furthermore, it may necessitate changes in state appropriations.
The committee’s chairperson will call meetings as necessary, with funds for the resolution’s provisions coming from appropriations to the Senate. The committee’s findings, including any recommendations for legislative changes or appropriation adjustments, will be reported to the Senate.
Senator Josh McLaurin, a Democrat from Sandy Springs, criticized Republicans for what he termed “political theater,” referring to the establishment of a special committee aimed at targeting Willis.
McLaurin questioned the motive behind the move, asking, “Why are we creating a new entity with extraordinary subpoena power and the ability to put people under oath for only this issue?”
Senator Greg Dolezal, a Republican from Cumming and the primary sponsor of the resolution defended the legislature’s actions, citing their responsibility to monitor the use of taxpayer funds. Dolezal argued that this accountability gives them the authority to investigate the allegations against Willis.
Dolezal said, “This resolution is about an officer of the state of Georgia … and how they are using state funds,” explaining, “This falls squarely within what we should be talking about and what we should be addressing.”
Court documents submitted last month by Michael Roman, a co-defendant of Trump, contain allegations against Willis, who is responsible for bringing election interference-related charges against Trump. The documents claim that Willis is involved in an “improper” affair with Nathan Wade, a special prosecutor she appointed to assist in prosecuting possibly the next US President. The documents further allege that Wade, who reportedly lacks experience in RICO and felony prosecutions, has charged taxpayers around $600,000 since January 2022.
According to Roman’s filing, Wade invoiced Fulton County for 24 hours of work on a single day in November 2021, shortly after he was appointed special prosecutor. The filing also suggests that Willis financially benefited from what is described as her lover’s inflated taxpayer-funded salary, allegedly using it to fund lavish vacations together.