A ‘Cold Civil War’ Catches GCs In The Middle


Professor Bruce Green was quoted in Law360, examining the reputational risks some law firms face when representing clients.

“Jones Day, what are you doing? And, no, it is NOT your ‘obligation to continue representing long-term clients.’ See ABA Model Rules 1.16 and 3.3. You’re enabling a grave threat to our democracy,” read an online post by Matthew Bonness, a Maryland-based assistant general counsel for a major bank.

His was just one of hundreds of social media posts attacking the firms — primarily Jones Day and Porter Wright Morris & Arthur LLP — involved in suits filed on behalf of President Donald Trump and the Republican Party challenging last week’s election and some mail-in ballots.

Another expert, Bruce Green, director of the Stein Center for Law and Ethics at Fordham Law School in New York, had mixed feelings about the situation.

“In general, representation of a client doesn’t mean you endorse everything about that client,” Green said. “I think lawyers have to be free to represent unpopular clients.”

Even so, he added: “If I were a litigator, I would not use my time and talent to bring these lawsuits because I think they are baseless, and they are not going to win.”

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