Written by Ashton Snyder on
 March 28, 2024

Judge Rules Lawyer In Trump Case Should Be Disbarred

A significant decision has emerged from California, where a judge has made a groundbreaking recommendation regarding a lawyer deeply involved in post-election activities.

A California judge has recommended the disbarment of lawyer John Eastman, marking a pivotal moment in the ongoing legal and disciplinary repercussions stemming from the 2020 election.

According to The Hill, State Bar Judge Yvette Roland's recommendation is not taken lightly, considering John Eastman's central role in former President Donald Trump’s attempts to contest the 2020 election outcomes. His actions, deemed to include "false and misleading statements" about election fraud and his involvement in the events leading to the January 6, 2021, Capitol riot, have now seen significant legal repercussions.

In a meticulously detailed 128-page decision, Judge Roland addressed the gravity of Eastman's actions, which were found to be guilty on ten out of eleven counts. These counts were related to his efforts in disseminating unfounded claims of election fraud and his role in the events that culminated in the Capitol riot. Given the serious nature of his misconduct, the judge underscored the necessity of Eastman's disbarment.

Understanding the Depth of Eastman's Involvement and Judicial Reasoning

Eastman's ordered sanctions, amounting to $10,000, to be paid to the State Bar of California Client Security Fund, add a financial dimension to the consequences he faces.

Furthermore, his move to inactive status pending an appeal immediately changes his professional standing. This decision arrives after a trial spanning more than 30 days, highlighting the thorough examination of Eastman's conduct.

The trial’s outcome results from a comprehensive legal process initiated by findings that concluded in November with a preliminary determination of Eastman's culpability. His testimony during the trial was a critical part of the proceedings. Toni Atkins, then Speaker of the California State Assembly, appointed Judge Roland, placing the decision within a broader context of state judicial oversight.

Eastman’s legal approach aimed at overturning the election results in key states, involving alternative electors and pressuring then Vice President Mike Pence, was central to the case. Roland’s emphasis on Eastman’s lack of remorse and his potential for future unethical behavior magnifies the perceived threat to public integrity and the legal profession.

Legal Precedents, Rights, and Responsibilities

Interestingly, Roland diverged on one of the eleven counts against Eastman, specifically related to his January 6 speech, citing insufficient evidence to link it directly to the Capitol assault. This nuance in the judgment reflects carefully considering each charge's specifics.

Eastman’s defense has ardently argued that his actions were grounded in legal precedent, constitutional research, and the fundamental processes that define legal practice. They assert his involvement was rooted in a legitimate exploration of legal and constitutional questions protected under the First Amendment. This stance suggests a broader debate about the scope of legal advocacy and constitutional interpretation.

Chief Trial Counsel George Cardona’s remarks underscore the fundamental duty of attorneys to uphold the Constitution and the rule of law. Cardona’s criticism of Eastman’s actions as a direct threat to democratic principles echoes a profound concern for the integrity of the electoral process and the legal profession's role in safeguarding it.


In conclusion, the recommendation for John Eastman's disbarment is noteworthy in the ongoing legal and disciplinary actions following the 2020 election. Judge Yvette Roland's detailed decision, emphasizing the severity of Eastman's actions and the necessity for accountability, marks a significant step in addressing the ethical and legal boundaries of election-related conduct.

As Eastman plans to appeal, the California Supreme Court's review will be the next critical phase in this case, with implications for legal standards and the broader dialogue on democracy and the rule of law.

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About Ashton Snyder


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