Dominion Voting Systems filed a defamation suit against Fox News Network on Friday over the network’s claims that the company meddled in the 2020 election results. The suit, filed in Delaware where both companies are incorporated but not headquartered, is seeking $1.6 billion in damages.
In the complaint obtained by the Associated Press, Dominion argues that Fox began to spread falsehoods about the voting-services company in an attempt to win back viewers that dropped off because they saw Fox as “insufficiently supportive of President Trump, including because Fox was the first network to declare that President Trump lost Arizona.”
Dominion said Fox News continued to promote “verifiably false yet devastating lies” about the company, including debunked claims that Dominion used its voting machines and software to commit voter fraud and manipulate vote tallies.
“Yet even after Fox was put on specific written notice of the facts, it stuck to the inherently improbable and demonstrably false preconceived narrative and continued broadcasting the lies of facially unreliable sources — which were embraced by Fox’s own on-air personalities — because the lies were good for Fox’s business,” the complaint reads.
It continued, “Fox took a small flame and turned it into a forest fire. As the dominant media company among those viewers dissatisfied with the election results, Fox gave these fictions a prominence they otherwise would never have achieved.”
Dominion was a frequent subject in right-wing conspiracy theories about the election, which claimed that the company rigged its voting machines to favor Joe Biden over Trump. There were even unfounded suggestions that the Colorado- and Toronto-based corporation had ties to the late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chávez and his family.
Allegations of massive voter fraud in the 2020 general election have been debunked. Even Attorney General Bill Barr said in December that the Department of Justice could find no evidence of meddling “on a scale that could have effected a different outcome in the election.”
Dominion has already filed suits against other individuals that frequently pushed these allegations against the company, including Rudy Giuliani, MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, and attorney Sidney Powell. Fox News itself is already being sued by Smartmatic, another voting-equipment company, that also alleges the network made defamatory statements linking it to voter fraud.
In response to the lawsuit, Fox News released a statement that said, “Fox News Media is proud of our 2020 election coverage, which stands in the highest tradition of American journalism, and will vigorously defend against this baseless lawsuit in court.”
Fox intends to move to dismiss the suit, having issued four motions.