TOPEKA, Kan. -- As FOX 4 News first reported Monday, former Attorney General and Johnson county D.A. Phill Kline filed a motion Tuesday to have two Kansas Supreme Court justices removed from his appeal to keep his law license. A court spokesman confirmed the filings Tuesday afternoon. They include an appeal brief and the motion for the recusal of justices Carol Beier and Lawton Nuss, the court's chief justice.
Kline's attorney Tom Condit of Cincinnati said his filing demands justice Carol Beier be removed from hearing Kline's ethics appeal-citing among other things-a 2008 opinion she authored. Condit says the opinion relied on falsehoods about Kline's handling of abortion records-and was critical of Kline based on those falsehoods.
The filing notes "A judge shall disqualify himself or herself in any proceeding in which the judge's impartiality might reasonably be questioned..." Kansas Code of Judicial Conduct R.2.11(A). It adds "Justice Beier's untenable CHPP v. Kline opinion cannot be reconciled with the neutrality that is required for a court charged with presiding over the final stage of a proceeding with punitive and potentially permanent consequences for a lawyer."
"She showed her bias," Condit tells FOX 4 news. "Her opinion dressed down Phill based on falsehoods."
Condit claims Beier has also revealed herself as a feminist and abortion supporter in outside writings. Some of her writings the motion will claim-suggest she is a feminist who supports using the media to affect culture shifts.
The motion also asks that Chief Justice Lawton Nuss remove himself-because Kline filed a disciplinary case against him six years ago when he was the attorney general. That involved a school finance case before the court.
Justice Nuss met with lawmakers and Kline felt his role as attorney general compelled him to file the complaint, said Condit.
The motion for recusal requests a hearing. No dates have been set for that hearing or for the actual appeal.
Ron Keefover, a spokesman for the court, said the justices cannot comment on the filing under the Kansas Code of Judicial Conduct.
Kline, now a law professor at Liberty University in Virginia, has long maintained he did nothing wrong in his investigation of abortion clinics and alleged failures to properly report abortions involving minors.
That includes never revealing any of the patient names. The disciplinary board found Kline violate state ethics rules and he is now appealing to the Kansas Supreme Court to maintain his law license. Kline referred all questions to his lawyers.