Adding to the ignorance and misinformation drowning ethics comprehension regarding the Sally Yates affair, Sen. Feinstein used her questioning of Attorney General designate Jeff Sessions this morning to misrepresent the ethical duty of that office. (I don’t have a link yet, since I just watched it on C-Span.)
First, Democratic Senator Feinstein set some kind of modern political record for gall by asking Sessions for assurances that he would objectively and independently represent the justice system and the people, and not be a “political arm of the White House.” A political arm of the White House (and the Democratic Party) is exactly what Eric Holder’s and Loretta Lynch’s Justice Department were, and the Senator knows it and never raised her voice in opposition to it for eight years! The question is a fair one, but she is estopped from asking it. Indeed, for any Democratic Senator to ask that question is tantamount to deceit, suggesting that the previous Justice Department met the standard Feinstein is demanding that Sessions acknowledge.
This is the unethical double standard mindset that Democrats have been displaying since November 8.
Following that master class in hypocrisy, Feinstein lauded the justly fired Sally Yates for embodying that ideal. Feinstein is ignorant of what lawyers do and the ethical principles their profession obligates them to follow, apparently. That isn’t surprising, and if she were not falsely representing what Yates’ ethical duties were to a credulous public, I could excuse it. After all, she’s not a lawyer, and never was. She didn’t go to law school. I would bet my head (did you know that Edgar Allan Poe wrote a short story called “Never Bet the Devil Your Head”?) that the Senator has never read the Rules of Professional Conduct guiding lawyer ethics. After all, most lawyers haven’t read them for years, if at all.
No, Senator, Yates isn’t an example of anything laudable. She betrayed her client by serving as a political arm of the previous administration while supposedly representing the current one. She is exactly the kind of lawyer one does not want as Attorney General, or in any position of authority at all.
I wouldn’t trust Yates to fulfill any legal representation whatsoever, and I plan on making that case in a formal complaint to the District of Columbia Bar Association.