Dominion Voting Systems on Tuesday filed separate $1.6 billion lawsuits against One America News Network, Newsmax Media Inc. and former Overstock.com CEO Patrick Byrne, accusing them of deliberately lying about the 2020 presidential election and defaming the voting machine company.
The voting machine company alleges OANN and Newsmax deliberately created and cultivated “an alternate reality where up is down, pigs have wings, and Dominion engaged in a colossal fraud to steal the presidency from Donald Trump by rigging the vote,” all in a “quest for profits and viewers.”
Byrne was accused of bankrolling and promoting a conspiracy theory, based on manufactured evidence, “to convince the world that the 2020 election had been stolen” by an international conspiracy of China, Venezuelan and Spanish companies, prominent Republicans, numerous federal agencies, Chief Justice John Roberts, and Dominion.
Dominion alleged that Byrne, like Newsmax and OANN, spread the lies with the goal of making money.
Byrne “is a Dartmouth-educated Marshall Scholar with a PhD from Stanford who, until he was pushed out in disgrace in 2019, had a national platform as the CEO of a multi-billion-dollar company,” says the suit against Byrne, filed in federal court in the District of Columbia.
“He previously invested millions of dollars in — and continues promoting — blockchain voting technology, which can succeed only if voters and elected officials reject the auditable paper-based voting systems currently provided by Dominion,” the suit says.
The company’s lawsuit against OANN also was filed in federal court in Washington; the Newsmax lawsuit was filed in state court in Delaware.
The complaint against OANN also names as defendants Chanel Rion, the network’s White House correspondent, and Christina Bobb, another on-air personality. Bobb was “covertly moonlighting as a Trump Campaign advisor” at the same time she was “also falsely accusing Dominion of rigging the election and stealing it from Trump,” the lawsuit says.
“The defendants in today’s filings recklessly disregarded the truth when they spread lies in November and continue to do so today,” Dominion CEO John Poulos said in a statement. “We are filing these three cases today because the defendants named show no remorse, nor any sign they intend to stop spreading disinformation. This barrage of lies by the Defendants and others have caused — and continue to cause — severe damage to our company, customers, and employees. We have no choice but to seek to hold those responsible to account.”
Newsmax told HuffPost in an emailed statement it stood by its coverage.
“Newsmax simply reported on allegations made by well-known public figures, including the President, his advisors and members of Congress,” the company said. “Dominion’s action today is a clear attempt to squelch such reporting and undermine a free press.”
Byrne, meanwhile, cast the suit as a distraction ahead of what he predicted would be “a very difficult week” for Dominion, given various upcoming conservative events.
OANN did not respond to a request for comment.
The suits are separate from those filed by Smartmatic, another electronic voting system company also pursuing multibillion-dollar legal action against Fox News, Newsmax and OANN. Fox has called the lawsuit “meritless” and has moved to have it dismissed.
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