December 22 – After a jury ordered Rudy Giuliani to pay $146 million in damages to two Georgia election workers after he was found guilty of a defamation suit, Giuliani had to file bankruptcy.
A number of people are wondering what happened to the appeal process?
Pat Ryan of NewsTalk 103.7FM asked, “Don’t get any opportunity to appeal this? This decision here and paying back immediately is that typical?”
Attorney Clint Barkdoll said, “It’s very unusual, actually because there would have been an automatic period to file an appeal. The judge in this case said that they were concerned Giuliani was going to start transferring or dissipating assets to avoid these creditors, so the judge allowed immediate collection action, which forced Rudy now into this bankruptcy.”
In the bankruptcy petition, Giuliani reported that he may have nearly $500 million in debts.
Barkdoll said, “Now that includes this $140+ million dollar civil defamation judgment, but he has unpaid taxes, all sorts of other liabilities. He is reporting assets of a few million dollars, but between his tax liabilities and some of these other things, he’s going to be able to preserve some of those assets. The bankruptcy does give him protection. He’s saying he is going to appeal that defamation case but he’s going to really have some troubles here financially, even with this bankruptcy once all of this shakes out.”
Michele Jansen of NewsTalk 103.7FM suggested, “This feels political. The jury set this amount?”
Barkdoll confirmed, “This was a jury award. The judge allowed the immediate collection, but this was a jury award.”
Jansen continued, “We are in such volatile times. Giuliani has been so demonized by the media, whatever you might think about the stupidity of some of his accusations or not being sure of his facts, this just feels like political overreach on all levels. You said it’s unusual for the judge to order this immediate payment. It just feels like we see a lot of politics being inserted into so many cases.”
Barkdoll said, “The politics and the law issues aside on this, I don’t know what has happened to Rudy. I mean, you think back in the 2000s, post 911, Times Man of the Year. He came very close to the presidency. Remember he ran for president, had really high approval ratings, but something has changed with him. He’s in his 80s. I mean, no doubt, life has changed for him, but what a change from where he was 20 years ago. I mean, in many ways, again, regardless of one’s political stance, it’s a sad situation to see where he was and where he has ended up now.”