Senator-for-now Stevens’ good news, bad news and Lisa Murkowski.

Crossposted at Oxdown Gazette.

The good news: Sen. Stevens won’t lose his right to vote until he’s sentenced, so he’ll be able to vote for himself.

The bad news: It may not be enough.

And Lisa Murkowski: Although Alaska’s junior Senator has been keeping a fairly low profile since getting caught in an improper land deal that she failed to properly disclose on her Senate disclosure forms, Sen. Murkowski made an appearance with the freshly-convicted felon Senator-for-now at his ‘Welcome Home’ party. Instead of asking him to resign, though, Sen. Murkowski implored his supporters to keep working hard to re-elect Senator-for-now. They even danced a jig together.

Birds of a feather. Which is probably why one of my first posts at The Grievance Project detailed Sen. Murkowski’s purchase of prime Kenai River-front property from a lobbyist at a price far below its fair market value and failure to report the purchase on her Senate disclosure forms. Her conduct in both the purchase and filing of the disclosure forms involved dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation and reflect adversely on her honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer. Accordingly, her conduct violates the Alaska Rules of Professional Conduct, and even though an inactive member of the Alaska Bar Association, Ms. Murkowski remains subject to the Alaska Rules of Professional Conduct which subject her to sanctions for her unethical conduct.

The state bar system will not begin a formal investigation until it receives a formal complaint, but anyone can file a grievance against Ms. Murkowski. You don’t need to be a resident of Alaska or otherwise involved in this matter. Since a grievance can’t be filed online, I’ve written the complaint so anyone can easily file a grievance against Ms. Murkowski with the Alaska Bar Association in three simple steps:

  1. Print, complete and sign the official Attorney Grievance Form – Alaska Bar Association (.pdf);
  2. Print and attach this page to the Complaint Form as the factual basis for the claim; and
  3. Mail the complaint to the address noted on the Complaint Form.

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Theodore F. Stevens

Crossposted at Oxdown Gazette.

Theodore F. Stevens, the United States Senator from Alaska was convicted of seven (7) felonies on October 27, 2008. His conviction violates the Alaska Rules of Professional Conduct. Although an inactive member of the Alaska Bar Association, Mr. Stevens remains subject to the obligations imposed by the Alaska Rules of Professional Conduct.

Although the state bar system requires that a formal complaint be filed to begin a formal investigation, anyone can file a grievance against Mr. Stevens. You don’t need to be a resident of Alaska or otherwise involved in this matter to file a grievance. Since a grievance can’t be filed online, I’ve simplified the process as much as possible so you can easily file a grievance against Mr. Stevens with the Alaska Bar Association in three simple steps:

  1. Print, complete and sign the official Attorney Grievance Form – Alaska Bar Association (.pdf);
  2. Print and attach this page to the Complaint Form as the factual basis for the claim; and
  3. Mail the complaint to the address noted on the Complaint Form.

Personal Information:

Name: Theodore F. Stevens
Bar: Alaska
ID No:
Status: Inactive

Grievance Information: Alaska

Allegation: Theodore F. Stevens has been convicted of seven (7) felonies.

On October 27, 2008, a jury of his peers unanimously entered a verdict finding Theodore F. Stevens guilty of was convicted of seven (7) counts of felony making false statements. Accordingly, Mr. Stevens is in violation of Rule 8.4. Misconduct , which provides that:

It is professional misconduct for a lawyer to:

(a) violate or attempt to violate the rules of professional conduct, knowingly assist or induce another to do so, or do so through the acts of another;

(b) commit a criminal act that reflects adversely on the lawyer’s honesty, trustworthiness or fitness as a lawyer in other respects;

(c) engage in conduct involving dishonesty, fraud, deceit or misrepresentation;

(d) state or imply an ability to improperly influence a government agency or official; or,

(e) knowingly assist a judge or judicial officer in conduct that is a violation of applicable rules of judicial conduct or other law. (SCO 1123 effective July 15, 1993)

ALASKA COMMENT

Paragraph (d) of the ABA Rules was omitted because it is too vague. See the ABA Legal Background Section. All improper conduct is already regulated under the other rules.

COMMENT

Many kinds of illegal conduct reflect adversely on fitness to practice law, such as offenses involving fraud and the offense of willful failure to file an income tax return. However, some kinds of offense carry no such implication. Traditionally, the distinction was drawn in terms of offenses involving “moral turpitude.” That concept can be construed to include offenses concerning some matters of personal morality, such as adultery and comparable offenses, that have no specific connection to fitness for the practice of law. Although a lawyer is personally answerable to the entire criminal law, a lawyer should be professionally answerable only for offenses that indicate lack of those characteristics relevant to law practice. Offenses involving violence, dishonesty, or breach of trust, or serious interference with the administration of justice are in that category. A pattern of repeated offenses, even ones of minor significance when considered separately, can indicate indifference to legal obligation.

A lawyer may refuse to comply with an obligation imposed by law upon a good faith belief that no valid obligation exists. The provisions of Rule 1.2(d) concerning a good faith challenge to the validity, scope, meaning or application of the law apply to challenges of legal regulation of the practice of law.

Lawyers holding public office assume legal responsibilities going beyond those of other citizens. A lawyer’s abuse of public office can suggest an inability to fulfill the professional role of attorney. The same is true of abuse of positions of private trust such as trustee, executor, administrator, guardian, agent and officer, director or manager of a corporation or other organization.

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