Fulton County judge allows Donald Trump to appeal Fani Willis disqualification ruling

Wooden gavel on the judge's bench with a backdrop of law books

A Fulton County judge s allowing former President Donald Trump to appeal a ruling that has kept Fulton County DA Fani Willis on the election interference case. Fulton County Judge Scott McAfee granted the joint request on Wednesday from Trump and some of his co-defendants to obtain a certificate of immediate review, which allows them to appeal the ruling up to the Georgia Court of Appeals.

The lead prosecutor in Trump’s election interference case, Nathan Wade, resigned Friday as special prosecutor following a ruling by McAfee. Wade’s resignation came after McAfee declined to outright disqualify Willis, ruling either she or Wade must step aside from the case due to a “significant appearance of impropriety” – which stemmed from a romantic relationship between Willis and Wade.

McAfee in his order said the order “is of such importance to the case that immediate review should be had,” adding that he intends to keep moving forward with the case while Trump and his codefendants pursue their appeal. The order read: “The Court intends to continue addressing the many other unrelated pending pretrial motions, regardless of whether the petition is granted within 45 days of filing, and even if any subsequent appeal is expedited by the appellate court.” It will be up to the Georgia Court of Appeals to determine whether or not to take the issue.

Trump’s attorney Steve Sadow said in a statement that the move from McAfee “highly significant …The defense is optimistic that appellate review will lead to the case being dismissed and the DA being disqualified.”  Additionally, Jeff Disantis, spokesperson for the DA’s office, said of McAfee’s decision to keep the case moving that they [the DA’s office] will “work to move [the case] forward to trial as quickly as possible. As the case is not stayed during the appeal, this office will work to move it forward to trial as quickly as possible. We will limit our comment on the appellate matter to what we file with the Court of Appeals during the briefing process.”

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