Dominion Voting Systems files massive $1.6 billion lawsuit against Fox News

Katie Ramirez
March 26, 2021

The complaint, filed in DE, is the fourth in a series of lawsuits launched by the Denver-based voting company after it became the center of far-reaching false conspiracy theories surrounding its involvement in the 2020 election - fueled largely by right-wing figures close to then-President Donald Trump as part of the effort to overturn the results of the election.

Back in February, Smartmatic, another voting machine company, sued Fox News for spreading baseless accusations that the company was part of an global communist plot to rig the election for Joe Biden.

"Even the Trump Campaign publicly distanced itself from her, with Trump loyalist Chris Christie calling her claims a 'national embarrassment, ' and Republican senators calling the White House to say she seemed 'unhinged, '" the lawsuit said.

"FOX News Media is proud of our 2020 election coverage, which stands in the highest tradition of American journalism, and will vigorously defend against this baseless lawsuit in court", the company wrote in a statement obtained by Salon. Smartmatic's lawsuit is seeking $2.7 billion from Fox News.

The company argues that Fox News, a network that features several pro-Trump personalities, pushed the false claims to explain away the former president's election loss.

The lawsuit alleges top Fox personalities hosted guests such as Powell to spread lies about Dominion and then repeated and amplified those false claims.

Still, some Fox News employees elevated false charges that Dominion had changed votes through algorithms in its voting machines that had been created in Venezuela to rig elections for the late dictator Hugo Chavez.

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In January, a conservative online magazine followed suit and aired a retraction and apology for its reports that "falsely accused" Dominion of rigging the election based on "discredited sources".

"Fox took a small flame and turned it into a forest fire". Last month, Dominion asked social media outlets to preserve posts from the networks as well as from Fox News, Trump and others.

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. "Fox sold a false story of election fraud in order to serve its own commercial purposes, severely injuring Dominion in the process".

"We obviously hope that filing this lawsuit and proving our case can help with that, but it is an enormous uphill battle, and we're not going to be able to get all the way there, and we know that, and that's why Fox is on the hook for the massive economic damages they've done to Dominion", he added.

Dominion has also sued Giuliani, Powell and the CEO of Minnesota-based MyPillow over the claims. Unlike Dominion, Smartmatic's participation in the 2020 election was restricted to Los Angeles County. Some at Fox News knew the claims were false but their comments were drowned out, lawyers said.

"The buck stops with Fox on this", attorney Stephen Shackelford said. "They rebroadcast, republished it on social media and other places".

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