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Judge Dismisses Trump’s Lawsuit Against CNN

A federal judge appointed by former President Donald Trump has granted CNN’s motion to dismiss a $475 million defamation case brought by the former president.

Trump sued CNN for labeling his 2020 presidential election challenger “the Big Lie” — a term he argued is defamatory because it created “a false and incendiary association” with Adolf Hitler.

“CNN’s statements while repugnant, were not, as a matter of law, defamatory,” U.S. Southern District of Florida Judge Raag Singhal concluded in his ruling Friday. “The case will, therefore, be dismissed with prejudice.”

Trump’s lawyers had argued “use of the phrase ‘the Big Lie’ constitutes defamation per se because it ‘create[s] a false and incendiary association between the Plaintiff and Hitler,'” according to the court document. “He argues that the use of the phrase ‘the Big Lie’ is defamatory because it ‘has incited readers and viewers to hate, contempt, distrust, ridicule, and even fear the plaintiff causing injury to the plaintiff, the plaintiff’s reputation, and the plaintiff’s political career.”

The term ‘the Big Lie’ has been linked to Nazis and Hitler from the propaganda strategy as quoted by “Mein Kampf”: “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.”

Trump’s defamation lawsuit argued CNN’s viewers and readers would be led to have “understood that plaintiff would be Hitler-like in any future political role” and CNN failed to use the term “the Big Lie” when Democrats previously had challenged elections and complained about election integrity issues.

The disparate treatment showed malice toward Trump and was “evidence” that CNN was “not reporting the news, but rather propagating its political views,” Trump’s lawsuit added.

Trump sought at least $75,000 in damages and punitive damages of $475 million.

Singhal ruled the statements made by CNN were potentially defamatory under Florida law, but that “Trump’s defamation claims fail” on being “provably false.”

On that issue, he made the following arguments:

  1. “First, the complained of statements are opinion, not factually false statements, and therefore are not actionable.”
  2. “This is the news model of today,” noting this is the age of real-time social media sharing of news and opinion, without research or fact-finding.
  3. “[P]olitical motivation does not establish falsity. … Acknowledging that CNN acted with political enmity does not save this case; the Complaint alleges no false statements of fact.”

“Trump alleges that ‘the Big Lie’ refers to a Nazi ‘propaganda campaign to justify Jewish persecution and genocide,'” Singhal wrote. “Like Trump and CNN personalities Ashleigh Banfield and Paul Steinhauser, the court finds Nazi references in the political discourse (made by whichever ‘side’) to be odious and repugnant.

“But bad rhetoric is not defamation when it does not include false statements of fact. CNN’s use of the phrase ‘the Big Lie’ in connection with Trump’s election challenges does not give rise to a plausible inference that Trump advocates the persecution and genocide of Jews or any other group of people.

“No reasonable viewer could (or should) plausibly make that reference.

“… And even if the phrase ‘the Big Lie” could somehow plausibly compel a reasonable viewer to perceive Trump as ‘Hitler-like,’ or ‘authoritarian,’ such terms are not statements of fact subject to defamation laws ‘because of the tremendous imprecision of the meaning and usage of such terms in the realm of political debate.”

  • Wyatt Earp says:

    A judge appointed by Trump! More like a judge that was brought off and pay for by Merrick Garland to stop anything that truth! I guess the judge doesn’t know the meaning of SLANDER! That more in view with what CNN was doing! Attacking someone name, but didn’t attack the other BIG LIAR BIDEN! Trump need to keep pushing forward, the people are coming around to those LIES THE MEDIA PUSH FOR DEMOCRAT.

  • steve says:

    CNN fake news should of be sued. but then again, they are in biden pocket but not for long.

  • k says:

    “IN OTHER NEWS”~ US Was Behind Both Crimean Bridge Attacks: Seymour Hersh

    Legendary national security journalist Seymour Hersh has published a report this week alleging US intelligence helped the Ukrainians blow up the Kerch Bridge (or also, Crimean Bridge), which happened earlier this month and corresponded to President Putin refusing to renew the Black Sea Grain Initiative deal.

    What’s more is that Hersh’s sources described that the US assisted in the initial, larger Kerch Bridge explosion which had initially temporarily disabled it in October 2022. “The Biden administration’s role in both attacks was vital,” he wrote in a Thursday Substack investigative article.

    “Of course it was our technology,” an unnamed US official told Hersh, referring to the sea drone which detonated under the vital bridge on July 17. “The drone was remotely guided and half submerged–like a torpedo.”

    The source cited is said to be a US intelligence official who is speaking out anonymously “from the point of view of those in the American intelligence community who don’t feel they have the ear of President Joe Biden but should.”

    “Our national strategy is that Zelensky can do whatever he wants to do. There’s no adult supervision,” the US official complained.

    A section proving to be among the more blunt and controversial assessments from Hersh’s report is as follows:

    At this point, with the Ukraine counteroffensive against Russia thwarted, the official said, “Zelensky has no plan, except to hang on. It’s as if he’s an orphan—a poor waif in his underwear—and we have no real idea of what Zelensky and his crowd are thinking. Ukraine is the most corrupt and dumbest government in the world, outside of Nigeria, and Biden’s support of Zelensky can only come from Zelensky’s knowledge of Biden, and not just because he was taking care of Biden’s son.”

    There are some in the American intelligence community, the official said, who worry about Putin’s response to the recent Ukrainian drone attacks in central Moscow. “Will Kiev be next?”

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