A federal judge declares that Rachel Maddow’s show on MSNBC is not real news, according to PJ Media.
“Maddow’s show is different than a typical news segment where anchors inform viewers about the daily news.”
“It is virtually impossible to find similar headlines about Maddow even though the judicial rationale justifying dismissal of the lawsuit against her was virtually identical to the one used in Carlson’s case.”
“Indeed, lawyers for MSNBC and Fox cited most of the same legal precedent to defend their stars and to insist that their statements could not be actionable as defamation because viewers understood it as opinion rather than fact.”
“Indeed, it was Maddow’s statement — that OAN is ‘literally paid Russian propaganda’— that seems far more actionable than Carlson’s obviously figurative assertion that McDougal was ‘extorting’ Trump.”
Judge Cynthia Bashant dismissed the defamation lawsuit.
From PJ Media:
Here, Maddow had inserted her own colorful commentary into and throughout the segment, laughing, expressing her dismay (i.e., saying “I mean, what?”) and calling the segment a “sparkly story” and one we must “take in stride.” For her to exaggerate the facts and call OAN Russian propaganda was consistent with her tone up to that point, and the Court finds a reasonable viewer would not take the statement as factual given this context. The context of Maddow’s statement shows reasonable viewers would consider the contested statement to be her opinion. A reasonable viewer would not actually think OAN is paid Russian propaganda, instead, he or she would follow the facts of the Daily Beast article; that OAN and Sputnik share a reporter and both pay this reporter to write articles. Anything beyond this is Maddow’s opinion or her exaggeration of the facts.
Greenwald noted that a similar argument was used in the successful dismissal of a defamation lawsuit against Tucker Carlson and Fox News back in September—which the left exploited by claiming that “Fox admits that Carlson is a liar who cannot be believed!” Carlson had said that former model Karen McDougal “extorted” President Trump for wanting compensation in exchange for her silence about an alleged extramarital affair she claims she had with him.
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Falsely accusing people of being paid Kremlin agents has a long and ugly history in the U.S., having destroyed reputations and careers, yet this smear has once again become utterly commonplace in Democratic Party politics (a protracted and ugly feud among liberal commentators was initiated earlier this month when The Young Turks’ Cenk Uygur baselessly and falsely claimed that journalist Aaron Maté was “paid by the Russians”).