Legal experts suggest Fox-Dominion settlement might come back to bite the liberal media hard

Legal experts suggest Fox-Dominion settlement might come back to bite the liberal media hard. By Joseph MacKinnnon.

Fox News agreed Tuesday to pay Dominion Voting Systems $787.5 million (roughly one-quarter of Fox News’ reported gross earnings in 2022) to settle its $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit and avoid a protracted trial. …

Does the same law apply to all?

Mike Davis, founder of the Article III Project and former chief counsel for nominations to Senate Judiciary Chairman Chuck Grassley, indicated that the Dominion lawsuit has set a new standard, whereby the New York Post could be justified in filing a “billion-dollar defamation lawsuit” against news outlets that “reported the claim it ran a Russian disinformation campaign.”

The New York Post was not the only target of CNN’s possibly actionable smears. CNN also hounded the computer repairman who first blew the whistle on the Hunter Biden laptop scandal.

John Paul Mac Isaac, the owner of the Delaware computer shop, filed a lawsuit against CNN last year, in which he accuses CNN of broadcasting a “false and defamatory story” that intimated Mac Isaac had committed “an infamous crime, i.e., treason by working with the Russians to commit a crime against the United States of America by attempting to undermine American democracy and the 2020 Presidential election.”

Danger to free speech:

Matt Mackowiak, chairman of the Travis County GOP and president of Potomac Strategy Group, ..  suggested that the claims about Dominion that Fox News raised “were no question newsworthy. A sitting president’s legal claims in a hotly contested presidential election are newsworthy. Full stop. And if professionals at news outlets cannot cover issues in good faith when raised by such prominent officials in the middle of a contested election, the media will be dead.

Like Davis, Mackowiak indicated that liberals and liberal outlets have long gotten away with peddling information and claims that turned out to be untrue if not outright malicious. But “If Fox is found liable under this standard of anyone at the company having doubts, no media outlet will ever be safe.”

“It’s a gift to every green energy company lobbying for corrupt funding, every tech company censoring accounts, and every woke corporate actor engaged in preposterous diversity, equity, and inclusion policies that will use it to silence investigative journalists, criticism, and debate,” added Mackowiak. …

Former Attorney General William Barr:

“The theory advanced by Dominion is profoundly dangerous to the media industry as whole. Memories are very short and imaginations very limited if the left thinks that only Fox would be vulnerable to lawsuits in a world where defamation liability could be incurred for simply reporting allegations made by others” …

Barr cited the liberal media’s false claims of “Russian collusion” and the “lurid allegations” advanced on networks such as CNN by Michael Avenatti during the Senate confirmation of Justice Brett Kavanaugh among the instances when outlets exposed themselves to the reasoning behind this week’s defamation suit settlement.

The partisan nitwits running the US have overstepped the mark again in their anti-Trump zeal. Now the legal system has either lowered the standard for free speech and muzzled the press, or revealed that the system is unfair and partisan. I’m betting on the latter — CNN will not be held to the same standard as Fox, and may continue to smear the regime’s opponents without restraint.

hat-tip Charles