Right-wing media organization Newsmax is still trying to get Dominion Voting Systems' defamation lawsuit against it dismissed -- but according to Wall Street Journal legal reporter Jan Wolfe, that now looks like even more of a longshot than ever before.
Writing on Twitter, Wolfe flags a ruling issued this week by Judge Eric M. Davis of the Superior Court of the State of Delaware stating that Newsmax likely knew the allegations it was airing about Dominion in the wake of the 2020 presidential election were false.
"The complaint supports the reasonable inference that Newsmax either knew its statements about Dominion's role in the election fraud were false or had a high degree of awareness that they were false," wrote Davis.
The judge went on to cite statements by the United States Department of Justice, which was at the time run by Trump-appointed Attorney General Bill Barr, as good reason to believe that the case against Dominion simply didn't add up.
"The fact that, despite this evidence, Newsmax continued to publish its allegations against Dominion, suggests Newsmax knew the allegations were probably false," he wrote. "Although Newsmax ordinarily would not be required to investigate further, there were enough signs indicating the statements were not true to infer Newsmax's intent to avoid the truth."
Judge Davis then said that Dominion still needed to prove actual malice in order to definitively win its defamation lawsuit, although he noted at this time there is no reason to think Dominion does not have a legitimate claim.
All told, writes Wolfe, this development is a "bad omen" for Newsmax.
\u201cA bad omen for Newsmax: The judge in the Dominion case said evidence suggests Newsmax knew it was publishing false claims about the election but doubled down anyway.\n\nThere'll be more briefing and discovery, and then the judge'll return to this crucial issue of "actual malice."\u201d— Jan Wolfe (@Jan Wolfe) 1655480437
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