[Guest post by Aaron Worthing; send your tips here.]
Frequent commenter AD-RtR/OS! clued me into this story where Gloria Allred managed to get a settlement from Meg Whitman over that whole “nannygate” affair. So Gloria Allred risked her client being imprisoned, deported and sued for defamation, and all to get the princely sum of $5,500. I think if you take out Allred’s usual rates, she just might break even.
Of course we all know what they were really after (deep-sixing Whitman’s political career) and this is the same reason why it is not self-evident that she did a disservice to her client. As I wrote on October 6:
There ha[ve] been a lot of questions about the representation [by] Gloria Allred of Nicky Diaz Santillan, the former maid of Meg Whitman. I agree the whole thing looks bad. I mean this woman is a mother of two children who is risking prison (for falsifying documents) and deportation (for being an illegal alien) by putting a giant target on her head. Certainly from a financial perspective this makes just about no sense. But I have argued with others that you can’t really file ethics charges against Allred because she has a ready defense. She can say that the maid was so mad at Whitman and so wanted to ruin her political career she didn’t care about those potential negative consequences she would personally suffer. Its dubious but just plausible enough that I don’t think the disciplinary board would even be interested in investigating her.
I stand by my prediction that she probably won’t even be investigated, but at the same time I wish the California Bar did this at the very least: take Santillan aside and away from Allred, and verify that this really was what she wanted.
And it’s worth noting that Santillan’s own public proclamation that she was not being manipulated was less than credible:
Nicky Diaz Santillan, a Mexican who Whitman says used a fraudulently obtained Social Security card and California driver’s license, dismissed claims by the GOP nominee that she was part of a Democratic smear intended to damage Whitman’s standing with voters, particularly Latinos.
“I make my own decisions and I am not anyone’s puppet,” Diaz Santillan said in a prepared statement she read at the Los Angeles office of her attorney, Gloria Allred. “Nobody made me do it.”
As I said at the time:
I don’t know if the AP writer was intentionally snarking or what. I mean the AP article goes on to mention a few other harsh facts. But yeah, that doesn’t exactly help the case to read a prepared statement that you are not being controlled by anyone.
If this woman ends up deported I wonder what she would think of Allred’s representation.
[Posted and authored by Aaron Worthing.]