Fani Willis' challenger in race for Fulton County DA forced to debate empty podium when she doesn't show up

"When you pay one attorney nearly $1 million to handle one case," he said, "that leaves the rest of us vulnerable, that hurts everyone else in Fulton County."

Jarryd Jaeger Vancouver, BC
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis failed to show up to a debate against her Democratic opponent Christian Wise Smith on Sunday, leaving him standing next to a vacant podium.

Undeterred, Smith continued with the event, using his time on stage to slam Willis and paint himself as the better candidate.

As FOX5 reports, while Smith debated a vacant podium, Willis was co-hosting the "Self Care Fair" with Atlanta City Councilwoman Andrea Boone. The annual event, which first took place last year, coincided with Crime Victims' Rights Week, and sought to help those impacted by crime by offering free counseling, massages, and meetings with local officials.

Willis' office also noted that she had opted not to take part in the debate because she was focused on prosecuting Donald Trump and his co-defendants in the case brought against them regarding alleged attempts to overturn the results of the 2020 election in Georgia.

During the debate, which was sponsored by the Atlanta Press Club, Smith called Willis out for her conduct with the former special prosecutor in the Trump case, Nathan Wade, with whom she had also been in a romantic relationship.

"That issue is important to us here in Fulton County and a lot of people across the country," he said, referring to the case. "We all heard the phone call, we all know what happened on January 6, 2021."

"You have to do things differently," he added. "When you pay one attorney nearly $1 million to handle one case, that leaves the rest of us vulnerable, that hurts everyone else in Fulton County."

Following a series of hearings in which Willis, Wade, and witnesses gave their sides of the story, the judge ruled that either the DA or lead prosecutor had to recuse themselves from the case. Wade took the fall, allowing Willis to continue prosecuting Trump.

As FOX5 reports, a poll conducted last week showed Willis was in the lead with 79 percent support, compared to Smith's 9 percent.
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