Fox News on Tuesday filed a motion to dismiss a lawsuit by Dominion Voting Systems, stating the voting technology company’s complaint seeks to “stifle the media’s free-speech right to inform the public.”
Texas-based attorneys Scott A. Keller and Chip Babcock, the attorneys representing Fox News in the matter, commented, “There are two sides to every story. The press must remain free to cover both sides, or there will be a free press no more. The freedoms of speech and press would be illusory if the prevailing party could obtain billions of dollars from the press because it provided a forum for the losing side.”
This motion is based on the argument that Fox News did not concoct the claims that Dominion was facing over alleged issues with their machines, and was just reporting on the remarks being made by the then-president.
In the motion (shown in the pdf below), Keller and Babcock write: “When a sitting President of the United States and his legal team challenge a presidential election in litigation throughout the nation, the media can truthfully report and comment on those allegations under the First Amendment without fear of liability. Plaintiffs’ defamation lawsuit against Fox News threatens to stifle the media’s free-speech right to inform the public about newsworthy allegations of paramount public concern.”
Lehotsky Keller LLP’s Keller has previously argued 11 cases before the U.S. Supreme Court and 12 cases in front of the Texas Supreme Court. He previously served as the Solicitor General of Texas before founding Lehotsky Keller, and was Sen. Ted Cruz’s chief counsel on the Senate Judiciary Committee and a law clerk for Justice Anthony Kennedy of the Supreme Court.
Babcock, from the firm Jackson Walker, has tried over 100 cases to a jury and argued over 50 appeals, according to his online bio. With media and First Amendment litigation background, he’s represented clients such as Warren Buffet, Oprah Winfrey and George W. Bush, and previous corporate clients include CNN, Fox News, CBS Television Studios and Google.
In its original complaint, Dominion argues that Fox News, through wall-to-wall coverage and on-air interviews with former President Trump’s attorneys, helped spread the false claims that faulty machines somehow threw the election, and that the network “sold a false story of election fraud in order to serve its own commercial purposes, severely injuring Dominion in the process.”
The case is being litigated in Delaware, where both Fox News and Dominion are incorporated, and is the first defamation suit filed against a media outlet by the voting technology company. Here’s a digital copy of the 443-page lawsuit, first filed in March, and previously obtained by the AP.
After Dominion’s $1.6 billion defamation lawsuit was filed last month, Fox News said in a statement: “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.”
Below is a digital copy of Fox’s motion, obtained by TVNewser: