The Donald J. Trump For President campaign filed a new defamation lawsuit against the New York Times in the New York Supreme Court on Wednesday, seeking to the hold the legacy media publication accountable for its false claims of a conspiracy between Trump and the government of Russia to assist in Trump’s 2016 election as President.
The development could represent the first step towards holding fake news accountable for wide-ranging conspiracies alleging Russian interference in American politics on behalf of Trump, a recurring theme in the New York Times’ editorial and news coverage since the President’s election.
The Trump campaign is pointing to an op-ed in 2019 as an incident in which the Times “knowingly published false and defamatory statements,” most notably claiming that President Trump was willfully working with the Russia to ensure his election. The Times claimed Russia was boosting Trump’s political prospects with the hopes of a pro-Russian foreign policy to come during the Trump administration.
Jenna Ellis, senior legal counsel to the campaign, released a statement on the matter upon the lawsuit’s filing.
— Team Trump (Text TRUMP to 88022) (@TeamTrump) February 26, 2020
Pervasive claims of Russian interference in American politics were largely shut down by the conclusion of Robert Mueller’s much-hyped probe into the matter, the Special Counsel having failed to find evidence of any plot between the President and Russia to benefit his election.
Fake news has consequences. The New York Times could follow in the footsteps of CNN in facing an expensive settlement with someone it’s defamed, the latter recently being forced to settle with Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann for its slanted editorial coverage of the high school student.
Jim Acosta Calls Conservative Media a “Disinformation-Industrial Complex” and “Potential Existential Threat”
Project much, Jim?
CNN’s Jim Acosta appeared on Brian Stelter’s Sunday morning show “Reliable Sources” to call conservative media a “potential existential threat” that could “cause more suffering.”
Referring to the on-screen graph that shows a significant drop in engagement with Trump-related articles, Stelter asked Acosta if he thought this “quiet period” was temporary. Acosta replied as follows:
“I think it is temporary. I do think what this country faces right now […] I describe it as the disinformation-industrial complex, and that is Trump and his people, conservative outlets like Fox News, and then conservative websites and organizations aligned with the president, and conservative platforms. These three pillars of this disinformation-industrial complex essentially helped put Trump in power, kept him in power, sustained his grip on the Republican Party, and it remains a threat to our democracy. It is the reason why there were hundreds of Trump supporters storming the Capitol on January 6. And until that poison, that toxin, is drained from the national political discourse in this country, Brian, I do think that these forces represent a potential existential threat to this country and have the potential to come back and cause more suffering in the days to come.”
Acosta does not seem to realize, however, that the popularity and influence of right-wing outlets like Big League Politics are direct consequences of “journalists” like him and networks like CNN. They’re the original traffickers in disinformation and in fanning the flames of fearmongering. Alternative conservative media would not have taken off if the mainstream media weren’t so unbearably leftist.
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