Yesterday, the State Bar of California filed disciplinary charges against John Eastman for his role in attempting to overturn the 2020 presidential election. LDAD commends the Office of Chief Trial Counsel for seeking to hold Mr. Eastman accountable.
In December 2021, more than 1,300 signers, including prominent lawyers from around the country, joined LDAD in support of its ethics complaint against John Eastman. This complaint complemented an earlier one filed by States United Democracy Center. Several months later, the Office of the Chief Trial Counsel announced the launch of its investigation.
The words of the Office of Chief Trial Counsel in yesterday’s 11-count complaint address the extent to which Mr. Eastman sought to deceive the American people:
…[Eastman] knew, or was grossly negligent in not knowing, that there was no evidence upon which a reasonable attorney would rely of election fraud or illegality that could have affected the outcome of the election…
Nevertheless, … [Eastman] continued to work with Trump and others to promote the idea that the outcome of the election was in question and had been stolen from Trump… In doing so, [Eastman] violated his obligations as an attorney.
The complaint provides specific details sufficient to charge him with committing either intentional acts of moral turpitude, dishonesty, or corruption, or acts of gross negligence, which may result in Mr. Eastman’s disbarment and/or monetary sanctions.
The active engagement of bar licensing authorities is critical if we are to ensure that lawyers can never again bring our democracy to the brink by misusing both their professional skills as lawyers and the privilege of their law license.
LDAD is proud of its meticulous work in seeking to hold such lawyers accountable, and we are indeed grateful for the public servants who follow the rule of law and ensure that justice is done.
Collectively, our ongoing engagement as lawyers is vital to ensuring that those responsible for attorney discipline know that their constituents are actively interested in their actions to preserve public trust in the profession.