Fox Corporation is asking a New york city state court to drop a $2.7 billion character assassination suit brought against it by voting technology firm Smartmatic, stating its broadcasts after the Nov. 3 election were secured under the Constitution’s First Amendment.
Smartmatic, which provided voting systems used in Los Angeles County, brought its fit on Thursday, alleging that Fox News, a subsidiary of Fox Corporation, spread then-President Donald Trump’s lies about the election, consisting of conspiracy theories associated with its voting devices, in order to turn a profit and curry favor with Trump.
Surrogates of the president baselessly declared that Smartmatic devices were used to steal votes for Trump and count them for President Joe Biden as part of a multiyear conspiracy, consisting of over-the-top theories about sending votes overseas.
In an action filed late Monday, Fox responded that Trump’s effort to reverse the outcomes of the election was “objectively relevant” which Fox was serving in its function as a news company by permitting the then-president’s lawyers and surrogates to make their case on television.
The suit was submitted in Manhattan Supreme Court, a trial-level state court.
“This claim strikes at the heart of the news media’s First Amendment objective to notify on matters of public concern,” Fox’s lawyer, Paul Clement, composed in the filing, which made use of New york city Times Co. v. Sullivan, the landmark 1964 press freedom case.
“Simply put, Fox did precisely what the First Modification safeguards: It ensured the general public had access to newsmakers and certainly relevant info that would help cultivate ‘uninhibited, robust, and wide-open’ dispute on quickly developing occasions of unparalleled importance,” Clement wrote.
Clement, who served as lawyer general for 3 years under President George W. Bush and is now a partner at the law firm Kirkland & Ellis, is among the country’s most high-profile lawyers.