Dominion Voting System Files $1.6 Billion Defamation Lawsuit Against Fox News

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Dominion Voting Systems sues Fox News for $1.6 bln over.

Trump, a Republican, lost the November 2020 election to Democrat Joe Biden but continued to make false claims of widespread voter fraud, and his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol in January as Congress moved to certify the election results.

Dominion Voting Systems filed a US$1.6 billion (approximately NZ$2.3b) defamation lawsuit against Fox News on Friday (local time), arguing the U.S. cable news giant falsely claimed in an effort to boost faltering ratings that the voting company had rigged the 2020 election.

"Fox, one of the most powerful media companies in the United States, gave life to a manufactured storyline about election fraud that cast a then-little known voting machine company called Dominion as the villain", the suit stated.

Dominion has already filed lawsuits against pro-Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell.

Dominion argues that Fox News, which publicized false claims that Dominion doctored votes, "sold a false story of election fraud in order to serve its own commercial purposes, severely injuring Dominion in the process". A rival technology company, Smartmatic USA, also sued Fox News over election claims for a similar sum of money.

Earlier this week, Powell tried to fend off the more than $1.3 billion in liabilities against her personally by arguing in a motion to dismiss that "no reasonable person" would believe that her well-publicized comments about an worldwide plot against former President Donald Trump were "statements of fact".

"The truth matters. Lies have consequences", Dominion's lawsuit added. It argues that after "viewers began fleeing Fox in favor of media outlets endorsing the lie that massive fraud caused President Trump to lose the election", the network "set out to lure viewers back-including President Trump himself- by intentionally and falsely blaming Dominion for President Trump's loss by rigging the election". "If this case does not rise to the level of defamation by a broadcaster, then nothing does".

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Though Dominion serves 28 states, until the 2020 election it had been largely unknown outside the election community.

As the lawsuit notes, even Carlson jumped upon the Dominion-bashing bandwagon later in a segment featuring MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, who dared the voting machine company to sue him. "We apologize to Dominion for all of the harm this caused them and their employees".

In apparent response to the growing number of defamation cases, conservative US news outlets have begun to rely on prepared disclaimers or additional prerecorded programming to repudiate pro-Trump conspiracy theories spouted by guests and hosts. Unlike Dominion's, Smartmatic's participation in the 2020 election was restricted to Los Angeles County.

"The buck stops with Fox on this", attorney Stephen Shackelford said. Last month, Dominion asked social media outlets to preserve posts from the networks as well as from Fox News, Trump and others. "Fox chose to put this on all of its many platforms".

Dominion lawyers said that they have not yet filed lawsuits against specific media personalities at Fox News but that the door remains open.

Powell, though, relentlessly pushed her false theories about a rigged election as fact on social media and in dozens of television appearances, in press conferences, and in lawsuits filed in courts around the country- all of which were denied by judges or withdrawn.

News headlines on the impeachment trial of Donald Trump are displayed outside of the Fox headquarters on February 09, 2021 in New York City.

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