On Tuesday, April 2, 2024, the Washington Examiner reported that a conservative legal advocacy group filed an ethics complaint against a federal judge in Washington D.C. The complaint was submitted to the Judicial Council of the District of Columbia and concerned comments made by Judge Reggie B. Walton during a television interview last week.

In the interview on CNN, Judge Walton discussed remarks made previously by former President Donald Trump regarding a gag order issued in Trump’s New York hush-money case. While judges are permitted to speak generally about court procedures, the Article III Project claims Walton’s statements crossed ethical lines by appearing to prejudge Trump’s remarks. The group is led by Mike Davis, a supporter of Trump, who believes the judge’s words could influence potential jury pools in cases related to Trump in various cities.

Davis’ letter outlines that Trump had criticized New York Judge Juan Merchan overseeing the payoff case, claiming a conflict of interest due to Merchan’s daughter’s work with political organizations that oppose Trump. However, Trump did not threaten physical harm. The letter asserts Walton accusing Trump of making “violent threats” mishandled the situation and was prejudicial.

The suit argues a defendant is within their rights to raise evidence of potential judicial bias. It maintains that if Trump had truly meant harm, prosecutors could have pursued obstruction or witness tampering charges rather than a gag order. The complaint calls Walton’s perspective on the issue “highly inappropriate” and asks the Judicial Council to investigate whether the judge violated ethics codes through his televised comments about another court’s ongoing case.

 

 

Source: Washington Examiner