For reference, my background is a professional engineer and within this field we're beholden to a code of ethics that obligates certain duties paramount regardless of the law. Periodically, the ethical obligation runs contrary to the law and we're professionally obligated to navigate through the situation carefully. In that regard, more often than not, a non-engineer is usually not the best person to judge whether an engineer's actions in the performance of their professional duties was or was not ethical because they lack the requisite experience to do so. As a result, the majority of our licensing and disciplinary boards are staffed by other professional engineers, not judges or lawyers and definitely not a jury of laypersons.
To that end, my understanding is that attorneys are also held to a high ethical standard whereby they're expected to act in an ethical manner pursuant to their profession and their clients. Per this article, there are a litany of ethical allegations against Barr in his tenure as Attorney General jointly filed by multiple members of the DC Bar. The theme of the allegations are professional misconduct in failing to advocate for Barr's client, the United States; the specific allegations are:
- In absolving the president of criminal liability for obstructing justice upon receiving the Mueller Report last year, Mr. Barr repeatedly engaged in dishonest and deceitful conduct. His Senate defense of his determination of insufficient evidence to prove Mr. Trump’s obstruction was transparently untenable, as 1000 prosecu-tors publicly stated.
- In abandoning all precedent by attacking an inspector general’s report, Mr. Barr acted in alignment with the president’s narrative that the FBI’s investigation into his campaign was illegitimate. Mr. Barr rested his "beyond unusual" attack on half-truth, mischaracterization and deceptive concealment of facts.
- Asked in a televised interview about any FBI misconduct during the investigation of the Trump campaign, Mr. Barr abandoned the rules of his Department and of professional responsibility by publicly maligning the conduct of FBI personnel who are the subject of a criminal investigation; Mr. Barr thereby undermined the fairness of future criminal proceedings involving those individuals. He did so us-ing language that no ethical prosecutor would use in public comments about indi-viduals under investigation.
- In overseeing and ordering the unconstitutional attack on citizens peacefully protesting in Lafayette Square, the attorney general violated his lawyer’s oath. With the whole world watching, he demonstrated the starkest, anti-constitutional harm that a conflict of interest can cause.
The original article cites this report on US Bars' efficacy and it's not very promising. However, given that Barr's actions undermine the legal profession in a very public manner and much of the investigative work is already done, why wouldn't the DC Bar pursue disciplinary actions against William Barr?