Judge Hands Trump Loss With Dismissal Of Defamation Lawsuit
The frivolous lawsuit king got his head handed to him Tuesday. Donald Trump filed over 60 lawsuits to claim that he won the 2020 presidential election. He lost all but one of them, and that was just on a technicality. That did not slow the ex-president down. His latest lawsuit was against one of the “enemies of the people.”
Former Executive Editor of The New York Times, Max Frankel, wrote an Op-Ed The Real Trump-Russia Quid Pro Quo. In it, he wrote that in “an overreaching deal” prior to the 2016 presidential election, Moscow would help Trump beat former Secretary of State and his competitor Hillary Clinton. In return, Frankel made the case that Russia wanted a “foreign policy in a pro-Russia direction.” He was not named in the suit, according to the New York Times.
The ex-president’s re-election campaign, Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. filed his lawsuit in the New York State Supreme Court early in 2020. It claimed “defamation and accusing The Times of ‘extreme bias against and animosity toward.'”
Judge James E. d’Auguste dismissed the lawsuit based upon three reasons in his opinion:
He said that Frankel’s Op-Ed was a “nonactionable opinion.” That meant Frankel’s Op-Ed “was constitutionally protected speech.”
‘The Trump campaign did not have standing to sue for defamation.
The campaign had failed to show that The Times had published the essay with “actual malice.”
The New York Times’s Deputy General Counsel, David McCraw, released a statement that read:
‘THE COURT MADE CLEAR TODAY A FUNDAMENTAL POINT ABOUT PRESS FREEDOM: WE SHOULD NOT TOLERATE LIBEL SUITS THAT ARE BROUGHT BY PEOPLE IN POWER INTENDING TO SILENCE AND INTIMIDATE THOSE WHO SCRUTINIZE THEM.’
The newspaper “filed a motion to dismiss the case and impose sanctions on the campaign.” In this instance, Judge d’Auguste refused to “impose sanctions.”
Trump often attacked the New York Times and the media in general, calling them the “enemy of the people.” The ex-president accused the newspaper of “treason.” He also used threats of lawsuits. Then, his campaign filed “defamation suits against The Times, CNN, and The Washington Post.” In November 2020, a “federal judge dismissed the suit against CNN.” The Washington Post’s lawsuit is still pending.
Trump’s lawsuit against the New York Times was not the first, not by far. The Trump campaign’s lawyer was Trump’s attorney, Charles Harder. In 2012, the attorney also sued Gawker Media for the professional wrestler, Terry Bollea (Hulk Hogan). High-tech conservative investor Peter Thiel financed it. Gawker had reported on a sex video of the wrestler. As a result of losing the $140 million suit, Gawker Media went bankrupt and was sold.
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