Fani Willis No-Shows Debate To Host ‘Self Care Fair’ Amid Legal, Ethical Scrutiny

(Credit: Screenshot/Facebook/Atlanta Press Club)

Daily Caller News Foundation logo
Font Size:

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis opted to skip her first debate Sunday ahead of early voting in the Democratic primary to instead host a “self-care fair” for crime victims, according to Fox 5 Atlanta.

Willis’ absence left her Democratic challenger, Christian Wise Smith, debating an empty podium, Fox 5 Atlanta reported. Willis, who appointed her romantic partner Nathan Wade to work on the case against former President Donald Trump and allowed him to pay for vacations they took together, was sharply criticized by Judge Scott McAfee in a March decision that did not grant defendants’ request to disqualify Willis but did require Wade to step down.

During the debate, Smith did not say he would stop the Trump case if elected but did emphasize that Willis must “do things differently.”

“When you pay one attorney nearly $1 million to handle one case, that leaves the rest of us vulnerable,” Smith said in an indirect reference to Wade, who Willis paid a higher rate than the state’s top racketeering expert, contracts obtained by the Daily Caller News Foundation revealed. “That hurts everyone in Fulton County.”

Willis awarded Wade a contract at $250 an hour while Georgia’s top racketeering expert, John Floyd, was only making $200 an hour, the DCNF previously reported. Her office also handed contracts to Wade’s law partner.

“I worked in that office, and my salary was significantly less than what that attorney was paid,” Smith continued. “And I was responsible for handling a lot more cases than one.”

Defendants are appealing McAfee’s decision and continue seeking to disqualify Willis.(RELATED: Fani Willis Urges Appeals Court Not To Reconsider Ruling Letting Her Stay On Trump Case)

“Hey Miss Willis, how you doing? My question is, where are you?” Smith at one point asked the empty podium. “You know, I’m here because I care about the citizens and families of Fulton County, but it’s my understanding that you may have attended the White House correspondents dinner, you might be fundraising across the county, but what about us in Fulton County?”

Willis and Wade stated in their testimony that they split expenses roughly equally, with her reimbursing him in cash. Both also asserted that their relationship did not begin until after Wade was hired, though a long-time friend of Willis testified that it began in 2019.

McAfee found in March there were “reasonable questions” about whether Willis and Wade “testified truthfully about the timing of their relationship.”

All content created by the Daily Caller News Foundation, an independent and nonpartisan newswire service, is available without charge to any legitimate news publisher that can provide a large audience. All republished articles must include our logo, our reporter’s byline and their DCNF affiliation. For any questions about our guidelines or partnering with us, please contact