Pam Bondi – Bad AG Choice

Nov 19, 2018

WASHINGTON, DC – President Donald Trump has an opportunity to nominate a good attorney general and has a number of good choices, but Pam Bondi is not one of them. President Trump is meeting this week with Bondi, the outgoing Florida attorney general. Bondi should not be on the president’s short list because she is neither conservative nor competent to serve as the U.S. Attorney General.

Pam Bondi’s track record as attorney general in Florida is abysmal. Bondi was elected as attorney general in Florida after the prior Florida attorney general, Bill McCollum, filed suit against ObamaCare. “Pam Bondi was clueless about the legal issues in the ObamaCare law and did not aggressively or competently litigate the case. Having filed the first private lawsuit against ObamaCare on the day it was signed into law, I knew the legal issues. When I heard Pam Bondi speak about the ObamaCare litigation, it was obvious she did not grasp the legal issues,” said Mat Staver, Founder and Chairman of Liberty Counsel. 

When lawsuits were filed in January 2014 against Florida’s Constitutional amendment affirming marriage as one man and one woman, Bondi refused to defend the case until just before the hearing in July. “Many people called upon Pam Bondi to defend the marriage amendment, but she refused to enter the case until the last minute. I was in Miami on July 2, 2014, to defend the law as an intervenor. For months, Bondi refused to defend the law. At the last minute, an attorney from Bondi’s office showed up, but he was not prepared. His argument on behalf of the state lasted only four minutes! I have never seen such disgraceful, incompetent work. It was obvious Bondi did not want to defend the marriage amendment. Had I not been present, there would have been no defense of the law,” said Staver.

“Then on July 7, 2014, I appeared for the second case in Key Largo to defend the marriage amendment from another suit. The attorney from Bondi’s office presented a short, weak argument, if you could even call it that. I presented argument for 45 minutes. But after I finished, Judge Garcia asked the attorney for the state from Bondi’s office if there were any disputes in the facts alleged by the plaintiff, and he said ‘No!’ The plaintiffs had not presented any evidence to support their factual allegations. I was livid, because the state of Florida at the direction of Pam Bondi sabotaged the case with no fight. When I complained to the attorney, he told me he was following the orders of Pam Bondi,” said Staver.

During the recently completed Constitutional Revision Commission (CRC) that reviews Florida’s Constitution to submit proposed amendments every 20 years, Bondi was virtually absent. As the attorney general, she was automatically on the CRC. Her vote was desperately needed for a proposed amendment to the Constitution that would return the privacy amendment to its original intent and override courts that misconstrued it to cover abortion. Bondi refused to show for two critical votes and the proposed pro-life amendment failed. She was a no-show on the Judicial committee meeting. And she walked out right before a vote on the full floor of the CRC.

Bondi never cooperated with the leadership of the Republican Attorney General’s Association. Bondi refused to sign on to any of the dozens of amicus briefs that other Republican state attorney generals signed onto over the years regarding cases and issues about life, marriage, or religious liberty.

Having talked to people who worked in and left the Office of Attorney General, Bondi was not known for hiring conservative staffers and lawyers.   

“Pam Bondi would be a disaster for U.S. Attorney General. President Donald Trump deserves someone who is competent, not afraid to take on unpopular issues, and who is willing to work hard. Bondi is not the right choice for this very important position. Mr. President, please do not pick an attorney general like the one we have had in Florida under Pam Bondi,” said Staver.

Liberty Counsel is an international nonprofit, litigation, education, and policy organization dedicated to advancing religious freedom, the sanctity of life, and the family since 1989, by providing pro bono assistance and representation on these and related topics. Liberty Counsel provides broadcast quality TV interviews via Hi-Def Skype and LTN at no cost.