Marc E. Elias previously served as Chair of Perkins Coie. Elias left Perkins Coie in August, 2021 to form the Elias Law Group to focus on "electing Democrats, supporting voting rights, and helping progressives make change."
Marc Elias Represents Andrew Gillum
- Fresh off a string of embarrassing defeats in court, the Democrat superlawyer revealed Wednesday that he is representing Andrew Gillum, the Democratic Florida gubernatorial nominee who lost to Gov. Ron DeSantis (R.) in 2018. Gillum faces a 21-count indictment for conspiracy, fraud, and making false statements, supported by detailed financial records and testimony from undercover agents.
- Gillum withdrew from politics after police found him intoxicated in a hotel room full of drugs.
- Like other Democrats Elias represents, Gillum is accused of shameless and long-running corruption. The disgraced ex-pol allegedly siphoned political contributions into his personal accounts, accepted unreported gifts, and worked with donors to conceal top-dollar contributions. Gillum may have defrauded liberal moneyman George Soros of up to $137,000. Nonprofit organizations also number among Gillum’s supposed victims.
- The indictment generally paints a picture of a political circle built on looting and fraud. In a particularly jarring accusation, prosecutors accused Gillum and a top aide, Sharon Lettman-Hicks, of ransacking Gillum’s gubernatorial campaign for cash after DeSantis won the 2018 race. Gillum and Lettman-Hicks allegedly funneled $60,000 from the campaign to an entity they controlled, "P&P," as "reimbursement" for a fake get-out-the-vote effort. The pair are accused of splitting that money between themselves.
- It’s the same tactic the two allegedly deployed against an unnamed donor, who appears to be George Soros. The donor gave $250,000 to Gillum’s campaign, according to the indictment. Soros contributed exactly that sum to Gillum in spring 2018. Lettman-Hicks put $100,000 from that contribution toward Forward Florida, a pro-Gillum super PAC. The remaining funds were directed to P&P and allegedly disbursed to Gillum and Lettman-Hicks.
- That accusation is especially awkward for Elias, because Soros is a longtime ally. The reclusive billionaire funded a multi-state challenge to voter ID laws in 2016 which Elias oversaw as general counsel for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign. After former president Donald Trump beat Clinton, Elias joined the board of a powerful, Soros-funded super PAC.
- Apart from allegedly bilking his own campaign for cash, Gillum is accused of pocketing a portion of $200,000 in contributions he finagled out of two nonprofits. The nonprofits are not named in the indictment. The donations were supposed to support the Gillum-backed Campaign to Defend Local Solutions. Lettman-Hicks is accused of ripping $50,000 from that contribution and paying it out to Gillum as a salary from P&P.
- Other allegations detail alleged favor-trading and attempts to hide massive campaign contributions. Gillum and his aides allegedly talked with undercover federal agents for months about a six-figure donation to Forward Florida, the pro-Gillum PAC. The agents posed as developers interested in purchasing property in the Tallahassee area. The group discussed how they might conceal the source of the donations. And Gillum promised to look favorably on their development proposals, the indictment alleges.
- Those same undercover agents hosted Gillum in New York City in 2016, where they provided accommodations, a private boat tour of the city harbor, and tickets to the Broadway musical Hamilton. And on a separate occasion, one of the agents picked up a $4,000 dinner tab for the mayor and his supporters. None of those gifts were disclosed on ethics forms or campaign reports.
- The indictment further claims that Gillum lied about his conversations with the undercover agents when questioned by federal authorities.
- After losing to DeSantis, Gillum joined CNN as a paid contributor. He is the latest ex-CNN fixture to wind up in a federal courtroom. Anti-Trump lawyer Michael Avenatti, who appeared on the little-watched network over 120 times according to a Fox News tally, is serving a five-year prison sentence for convictions in New York State court and is awaiting sentencing on federal convictions for embezzlement, fraud, and obstructing investigations.
- Notwithstanding detailed evidence from financial records and testimony from undercover agents, Elias is sure the government’s indictment is all wrong.
Netroots Nation 2021
- Public Wise is building a publicly accessible online database of individuals and organizations involved in the deadly riot and insurrection at our nation’s Capitol on January 6, 2021. The violent attacks on that day not only targeted members of Congress, but were a vile attempt to silence the voices of all American voters. Public Wise will bring together key partner organizations who are investigating involvement in the insurrection of elected and public officials, police and military personnel, and those who receive their salaries from taxpayer dollars to ensure long term accountability for their actions. The findings by these organizations will be publicly available on our database, which will be discussed during the panel.
Led by: Stephanie Miliano
- Marc Elias is a nationally recognized authority in voting rights, redistricting, campaign finance, law and litigation. He is the founder of Democracy Docket, the leading progressive media platform dedicated to voting rights and democracy, and Elias Law Group, a mission-driven firm committed to helping Democrats win, citizens vote, and progressives make change.
- Marc has handled hundreds of cases involving politics, voting rights, and redistricting. He has successfully argued and won four cases in the U.S. Supreme Court, as well as dozens of cases in state supreme courts and U.S. courts of appeal. In 2020, Marc led the historic legal effort to protect voting rights, litigating over 160 lawsuits in the face of the pandemic and a national effort by the GOP to make it harder to vote. He successfully fought and defeated Donald Trump and his allies in dozens of post-election lawsuits and in several statewide recounts and contests. As Republicans continue to mount aggressive challenges to voting, Marc continues to fight back in court—and on Twitter— at breakneck speed. Marc is an alumnus of Duke Law School and a proud owner of a Portuguese Water Dog named Bode.
- Marc represents dozens of U.S. senators, governors, representatives and their campaigns as well as the Democratic National Committee, Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, National Democratic Redistricting Committee, Priorities USA, Senate Majority PAC and House Majority PAC. Marc served as general counsel to Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign in 2016 and John Kerry’s presidential campaign in 2004.
- As a litigator, Marc has handled scores of cases involving politics, voting rights and redistricting. He has successfully argued dozens of cases in state supreme courts and U.S. courts of appeal. He has argued and won four cases in the U.S. Supreme Court: Virginia House of Delegates v. Bethune-Hill, Wittman v. Personhuballah, Bethune-Hill v. Virginia State Bd. of Elections and Cooper v. Harris.
- In 2019, Marc successfully represented Democratic candidate Daniel McCready during an election fraud hearing that resulted in North Carolina ordering a new congressional election in NC-9—the first and only time a state has set aside a federal election as a result of fraudulent activity.
- In 2016, Marc successfully represented Governor Roy Cooper in the North Carolina post-election and recount process. He served in the same role for Attorney General Mark Herring in the Virginia attorney general’s successful recount in 2013. Marc also served as lead counsel for Senator Al Franken in the 2008 Minnesota senate election recount and contest.
- Marc has represented numerous clients in public corruption and campaign finance cases involving the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. attorneys offices, as well as before committees of both the U.S. House and Senate, and federal agencies.
- Named by Politico Magazine as one of the “50 Politicos to Watch,” Marc is frequently quoted on political law matters by the national media, and he has spoken and written extensively about both politics and political law.
Bush v. Gore
- SO NOW the votes in Ohio have been recounted, and it's time for Congress to tally the Electoral College. But while the election is over, a fight goes on to protect everyone's right to vote and make sure every vote is counted.
- I wish it weren't so, but the final facts look like the picture on the morning of Nov. 3 when my brother, John Kerry, ended his campaign for president. As campaign leaders sat in a Boston war room overlooking a dwindling Election Night rally in the plaza below, on the phone was a team of smart, tough veterans who know how to count votes and how votes get counted. All were veterans of Florida in 2000 who would have jumped at a rematch with Karl Rove and James Baker III.
- In the room was Deval Patrick, former assistant attorney general for civil rights. In Washington was Michael Whouley, the never-say-die loyalist who stopped Al Gore from conceding; Jack Corrigan, who helped fight Bush v. Gore in the courts and the precincts; and Robert Bauer and Marc Elias, leading election lawyers and Kerry campaign counsel. On the phone from Ohio was the chief of the legal team there, David Sullivan, longtime election counsel for the Massachusetts secretary of state, who himself was a plaintiff more than 30 years ago in a lawsuit to register college students and -- with me -- a defendant in unsuccessful lawsuit brought against us for properly challenging vote fraud.
- They were backed by 3,300 lawyers on Ohio's election protection team, part of more than 17,000 Kerry-Edwards lawyers nationwide. They were joined by 8,000 lawyers with the nonpartisan Election Protection Coalition of the NAACP, the Lawyers Committee for Civil Rights, People for the American Way, and other organizations and thousands more lay volunteers and observers.
- The Election Protection Coalition describes its effort alone as "the largest ever voting rights mobilization" in history. As a lawyer who early on advocated a massive effort to protect the vote, I am proud that so many answered the call.
Let America Vote Advisory Board
- Perkins Coie and its Political Law Group Announce the Formation of the Independent Firm Elias Law Group LLP (accessed Oct 10,2021)
- Dem Superlawyer Marc Elias Adds Corrupt Florida Pol To Loser Client List (accessed on June 22, 2022)
- January 6th: Tracing The Traitors Panel (accessed Oct 10,2021)
- Marc Elias (accessed Oct 10,2021)
- Marc Elias Bio accessed June 27 2019
- Counting every vote (accessed on 11/5/2020)
- LET AMERICA VOTE IS LEADING THE FIGHT FOR VOTING RIGHTS, accessed 12-11-2017