Chesebro, a New York attorney who worked with the former president’s campaign, was a “mastermind” behind an aborted plan to use false electors to re-elect Trump, the advocacy group Lawyers Defending American Democracy wrote in a complaint to the New York court system’s attorney grievance committee.
The complaint, which alleges Chesebro’s work violated New York’s rules of professional conduct, was signed by 63 lawyers, including past leaders of various New York-based bar associations.
Adam Kaufmann, a senior partner at Lewis Baach Kaufmann Middlemiss who is representing Chesebro, declined to comment. Chesebro has previously defended his work with the Trump campaign.
Lawyers Defending American Democracy, a non-profit, non-partisan attorney group, has also filed complaints against Jeffrey Bossert Clark, former acting head of the Justice Department’s civil division, and Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s former personal lawyer. The D.C. Office of Disciplinary Counsel is investigating both Clark and Giuliani; Giuliani’s New York license was suspended in June 2021.
The 65 Project — a nonprofit legal activism group named for the number of failed lawsuits purportedly brought to overturn the 2020 election results — filed its own disciplinary complaint against Chesebro in New York in July.
The 65 Project has filed 55 attorney ethics complaints since its launch last year, said Michael Teter, its managing director.
While its complaints are pending, the 65 Project is shifting its focus to changing the professional rules for lawyers in nearly a dozen states and the District of Columbia, Teter said Wednesday.
“Just as Trump and his allies sought to exploit vagueness in the Electoral Count Act, so too have some lawyers evaded accountability due to gaps in the legal profession’s ethical rules,” Teter said.
Teter said the proposals will “close the gaps” that allow office-holding lawyers to violate attorney standards “by amplifying knowingly false statements about elections.” The proposals will also require lawyers who advise government officials to represent the interests of the office, not the individual, he said.
Teter said the 65 Project has teams of volunteer lawyers who will push their respective state bars to adopt the changes in time for the 2024 election.