Dominion Voting Systems filed a $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit against Fox News on Friday, saying the news outlet perpetuated false claims that the voting machine company rigged the 2020 presidential election, arguing that “Fox endorsed, repeated, and broadcast a series of false but devastating lies about Dominion."
Not only does the lawsuit state Fox made false claims, it alleges that Fox knew the claims were false but continued to report and spread the “misinformation” to improve ratings.
“The truth matters. Lies have consequences," the lawsuit states, according to the Associated Press. “Fox sold a false story of election fraud in order to serve its own commercial purposes, severely injuring Dominion in the process. If this case does not rise to the level of defamation by a broadcaster, then nothing does.”The lawsuit states, “Fox also knew these lies were being rebutted by an increasingly long list of bipartisan election officials, election security experts, judges, then-Attorney General Bill Barr, then-United States Director of Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency Chris Krebs, Election Assistance Commissioner Ben Hovland, Republican Georgia Governor Brian Kemp, Republican Georgia Secretary of State Ben Raffensperger, and Republican former Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams, to name a few - not to mention some within Fox itself.”
Since November 2, election officials across the country have disputed claims that the election was rigged and nearly all of Trump’s legal challenges over the election have been dismissed.
Dominion is also suing Trump's former lawyers, Rudy Guiliani and Sidney Powell, and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell for allegedly making false claims about their machines.
Fox News hosted Guiliani, Powell and Lindell multiple times following Election Day, allowing them to openly make claims about election fraud on the platform. Transcripts from their appearances with hosts such as Lou Dobbs and Tucker Carlson are included in Dominion's lawsuit.
No lawsuits have been filed against specific hosts on Fox News, but the possibility remains according to Dominion’s lawyers.
This is the first defamation lawsuit Dominion has filed against a media outlet for false election fraud claims, but more could come as other outlets featured the same guests. One of Dominion's competitors, SmartMatic USA, is also suing Fox News using the same argument, but SmartMatic’s voting technology was only used in Los Angeles.
“The buck stops with Fox on this,” attorney Stephen Shackelford said. “Fox chose to put this on all of its many platforms. They rebroadcast, republished it on social media and other places.”