- John Eastman is a senior fellow at the Conservative Claremont Institute.
- Before January 6, he drafted notes to justify that the 2020 election results were overturned.
A two-part group of legal experts has written to the California State Bar demanding that an ethical inquiry be opened by a conservative lawyer who advised the Trump administration on how to overthrow the results of the 2020 election.
In a six-page memo obtained by Insider last week, John Eastman, a senior colleague at the Claremont Institute, argued that Vice President Mike Pence could unilaterally reject votes for President Joe Biden and secure another term for former President Donald Trump — which constitutional legal expert Kermit Roosevelt described “a proposed coup in a legal language.”
By offering the Trump Council legal advice, some believe Eastman violated his professional responsibilities as a lawyer.
“Lawyers, especially those representing elected and appointed officials, have a solemn duty to the public to advise their clients within the four corners of the law and to ensure that they do not allow themselves to become the tools that these officials seek to undermine the democratic governance, “reads a complaint filed by the United States United Democracy Center, an impartial group advocating for election integrity.
In particular, the complaint notes that Eastman “assisted in Mr. Trump’s dangerous efforts to prevent or disrupt the counting of ballots” and urged former Vice President Pence to “violate his legal obligations.”
Christine Todd Whitman, a Republican who served in the cabinet of the Bush administration, said the complaint was an attempt to secure “democracy wins even in the face of unprecedented disinformation and attempts to overthrow a free, fair election.”
“It is vital that politicians and legal experts from both sides of the aisle stand up and fight against these anti-democratic actions taken by John Eastman and his peers,” Whitman said in a statement.
Eastman claimed the complaint was “politically motivated” and told Insider he looks forward to “responding fully” if it progresses.
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