Friday, September 8, 2023

U.S. Rep. Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), a former wrestling coach, proves to be out of his league in challenging Georgia DA Fani T. Willis to a legal match of wits

Jim Jordan and Fani T. Willis

If Fani Willis vs. Jim Jordan had been a boxing match, it would have been over with a first-round knockout. To use legal terms, commentators would have described it as "nolo contendere" (no contest). The outcome was no surprise to longtime Alabama attorney Donald Watkins, who knew from the outset it would be a mismatch. In a post titled "Jim Jordan is No Match for Fani T. Willis," Watkins uses wrestling metaphors in a nod to Jordan's history as a collegiate wrestling coach:

Congressman Jim Jordan (R-Ohio), Chairman of the House Judiciary Committee in Washington, D.C., is no match for Fulton County, Georgia, District Attorney Fani T. Willis. In one well-written and brilliantly researched letter, Willis body-slammed Jordan, a former Ohio State University wrestling coach, and pinned him to the judicial mat.

Fani Willis' letter showcases her superior legal acumen over Jim Jordan's unlicensed political posturing. Willis is the real deal. Click here to read the letter for yourself. 

While Jim Jordan is a law school graduate, he never took any state's bar exam. On Fox News and inside the halls of Congress, Jordan sounds tough. He often pontificates about principles of law, as if he is an attorney (which he is not).

In the legal arena, Jordan is viewed by many professionals (Democrats and Republicans alike) as a loudmouthed lightweight and a weak-kneed pushover.

The letter proves that Willis is adept at telling "how the hog ate the cabbage," as we called it in the southern part of the Midwest, where I grew up. In some cases, Willis tells Jordan how to "eat the cabbage" before he even knows the cabbage -- or a hog, for that matter -- exists. Here are some of my favorite parts of the letter, as reported by CNN:

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis delivered a scathing response to House Judiciary Chair Jim Jordan’s demands for information about her investigation into efforts to overturn the 2020 election results in Georgia, slamming the Republican for trying to “interfere with an active criminal case,” according to a new letter issued on Thursday.

Willis, a Democrat, condemned Jordan’s investigation into her case against former President Donald Trump and his allies. She said the Jordan probe’s “obvious purpose is to obstruct a Georgia criminal proceeding and to advance outrageous partisan misrepresentations.”

She argued, “there is no justification in the Constitution for Congress to interfere with a state criminal matter, as you attempt to do.” 

Dismissing Jordan’s requests for a broad array of documents pertaining to her investigation, Willis argued Congress does not have the jurisdiction to seek information about her ongoing criminal investigation.

As for getting ahead of Jordan, Willis does that with ease, per CNN:

“Your letter seeks the revelation of non-public and privileged information concerning my office’s investigation and prosecution of a specific case,” Willis wrote. “Your job description as a legislator does not include criminal law enforcement, nor does it include supervising a specific criminal trial because you believe that doing so will promote your partisan political objectives.”

Willis did voluntarily provide information about the federal funds her office receives. She said her office has received more than $14 million in federal grants for a variety of programs, including addressing violent crime, at-risk youth and domestic violence.

By providing the explanations for each grant, Willis seems to be trying to get ahead of a common refrain from Jordan and other House Republicans, who say the government has been weaponized against conservatives and have threatened to cut funding to federal law enforcement.

“If you and your colleagues follow through on your threats to deny this office federal funds, please be aware that you will be deciding to allow serial rapists to go unprosecuted, hate crimes to be unaddressed and to cancel programs for at-risk children,” Willis wrote. “Such vengeful, uncalled for legislative action would impose serious harm on the citizens we serve, including the fact that it will make them less safe.”

CNN has reached out to Jordan’s office for comment. In a letter to Willis last month, Jordan, an Ohio Republican, laid out why he believes his panel has jurisdiction over the state-level probe and accused Willis of being politically motivated, noting she set up a new campaign fundraising website days before the indictment came down and complained that she required mugshots for those charged – including Trump – which had not been the practice in his previous three indictments.

“You did not bring charges until two-and-a-half years later, at a time when the campaign for the Republican presidential nomination is in full swing,” Jordan wrote.

Willis also attached copies of a series of racist and violent threats targeted against her and her family. She even included the copy of an affidavit for an arrest warrant for an individual who repeatedly harassed her.

We sense that Jordan is wobbling and about to fall to the mat, face-first. Maybe Jordan needs to drop down to a lower weight class, but he appears to be a slow learner on these matters.

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