Anti-Trump DA bailed on debate to ‘schmooze’ with celebs, is challenged to a rematch


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FIRST ON FOX: Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis was challenged to a primary debate rematch after she skipped a local Democratic debate to attend the White House Correspondents Dinner in Washington, D.C., her Democratic primary opponent said in comments exclusively obtained by Fox News Digital.   

“There is no reason we can’t reschedule the debate,” Fulton County DA candidate Christian Wise Smith said in a press release exclusively obtained by Fox News Digital on Monday. “We are happy to work with her team to do it.”

The Fulton County Democratic Party held its first primary debate on Sunday, but Willis was a no-show, leaving her political opponent to take the stage alone, where he criticized her for hiring a romantic partner for the high-level prosecution of former President Donald Trump in Georgia. 

Wise Smith’s campaign lambasted Willis in the press release for skipping the debate to apparently travel to D.C. for the swanky White House Correspondents Dinner. 

ANTI-TRUMP DA’S NO-SHOW AT DEBATE LEAVES CHALLENGER FACING OFF AGAINST EMPTY PODIUM

Democratic DA candidate on debate stage alone

Fulton County DA candidate Christian Wise Smith on empty debate stage.  (Fox 5)

“I have enormous respect for Willis’s busy calendar, but ignoring a community-organized event while violent crime escalates, to schmooze with politicos while an ‘SNL’ comedian roasts the entire political process, tells me where her allegiances lie — and it’s not with the voters of Fulton County,” Michael Ceraso, Christian Wise Smith’s communications director, said. 

AFTER JUDGE’S SCOLDING FOR PLAYING ‘RACE CARD,’ FANI WILLIS SAYS SHE’LL ‘TALK ABOUT IT ANYWAY’

President Joe Biden, right, with comedian Colin Jost, left, on dais at correspondents dinner

President Joe Biden speaks with comedian Colin Jost during the White House Correspondents’ Association (WHCA) dinner in Washington, D.C. (Bonnie Cash/UPI/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

Social media posts from an independent photojournalist and Black-focused news outlet The Grio on Saturday evening and Sunday showed photos of Willis attending the media event this weekend in Washington, D.C. Local media initially cited Willis’ participation in the second annual “Self Care Fair” with an Atlanta city councilwoman in honor of Crime Victims’ Rights Week on Saturday as reason for skipping the debate on Sunday.

Fox News Digital reached out to the DA’s office Monday for comment, but did not immediately receive a reply. 

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis

Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis looks on during a hearing in the case of the State of Georgia v. Donald John Trump at the Fulton County Courthouse on March 1, 2024, in Atlanta. (Alex Slitz-Pool/Getty Images)

Wise Smith’s campaign said in the press release that Willis’ office has its hands full with the Trump case, which has left “everyday Georgians trapped in a flawed criminal justice system to fend largely for themselves as the high-profile case gobbles up limited energy and resources.”

“The three biggest issues facing Fulton County residents right now are (1) failure to center victims in criminal prosecutions, (2) ending the school-to-prison pipeline, and (3) curbing mass incarceration,” Wise Smith said. 

JUDGE IN GEORGIA SLAMS FANI WILLIS’ ‘IMPROPER’ CHURCH SPEECH, ‘PLAYING THE RACE CARD’

Willis is the Georgia district attorney who brought forth the election inference case against Trump, charging him and 18 co-defendants with racketeering over allegations they tried to overthrow the 2020 election. Willis became embroiled in controversy when she was accused of having an “improper” relationship with the special counsel she hired, Nathan Wade. 

Nathan Wade

Special prosecutor Nathan Wade sits in court during a hearing in the case of the State of Georgia v. Donald John Trump at the Fulton County Courthouse on March 1, 2024 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Alex Slitz-Pool/Getty Images)

Willis and Wade both admitted to the affair amid testimony on the matter, but said they only made their relationship official in 2022, after charges were brought against defendants in the Trump case. Witnesses in the case, however, alleged the pair began their relationship before 2022. 

A judge ordered Willis last month to either remove herself from the case or fire Wade, with Wade ultimately resigning. 

“Politics do not keep the families and residents of Fulton County safe. Action does. Unfortunately, our system has over-policed, over-convicted, and over-incarcerated. Yet, I haven’t heard Fani Willis put forth a plan that indicates she’s concerned about the real issues keeping voters awake at night,” Wise Smith added in the press release. 

JUDGE RULES FANI WILLIS MUST STEP ASIDE FROM TRUMP CASE OR FIRE SPECIAL PROSECUTOR NATHAN WADE

Wise Smith took the debate stage solo on Sunday, where he criticized Willis for hiring a romantic partner for the Trump case. 

“That issue is important to us in Fulton County and a lot of people across the country,” Wise Smith said on the stage, Fox 5 reported.

Fani Willis with left hand raised, speaks from witness stand in courtroom

fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis testifies during a hearing in the case of the State of Georgia v. Donald John Trump at the Fulton County Courthouse on February 15, 2024 in Atlanta, Georgia.  (Alyssa Pointer/Getty Images)

​​”When you pay one attorney nearly $1 million to handle one case, that leaves the rest of us vulnerable. That hurts everyone in Fulton County,” he added. 

TRUMP BLASTS FULTON COUNTY PROSECUTOR FANI WILLIS AFTER ROMANTIC PARTNER ALLEGATIONS: ‘TOTALLY COMPROMISED’

Wise Smith did not take issue with Willis prosecuting Trump or the case itself, instead saying Willis has “to do things differently.”

Wise Smith is an attorney, who previously served as an Atlanta city solicitor and Fulton County prosecutor, and describes himself as a “prosecutor with heart.” 

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Willis and Smith will face off in the Democratic primary on May 28. Despite the controversy surrounding the Trump case, local polling shows Willis with strong leads over Smith, Fox 5 reported.  





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