Home Latest News Trump Faces More Legal Setbacks: Judge Dismisses Defamation Lawsuit Against CNN

Trump Faces More Legal Setbacks: Judge Dismisses Defamation Lawsuit Against CNN

by Editorial Desk
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In a tough week for former President Donald Trump, he received another blow in the legal arena. A federal judge he himself appointed ruled against him on Friday, following the DOJ’s special counsel’s unveiling of three additional criminal charges against him in the classified documents case.

The legal setback came from U.S. District Court Judge Raag Singhal for the Southern District of Florida, whom Trump had appointed in 2019. The judge dismissed Trump’s lawsuit against CNN with prejudice, which means he cannot refile the same claim in that court. Trump’s lawsuit accused the cable news network of defaming him by using the phrase “The Big Lie” in reference to his claims about the 2020 presidential election being rigged in favor of Joe Biden. Trump’s legal team sought $475 million in damages, alleging that CNN deliberately aimed to defame him for political reasons.

In the court filing, Trump’s team asserted that CNN tried to tarnish his image by labeling him with various false and defamatory terms, including comparing him to Adolf Hitler. However, Judge Singhal ruled that although CNN’s statements may be repugnant, they did not constitute defamation as a matter of law, as they did not contain false statements of fact. The judge emphasized that calling someone “Hitler-like” does not warrant a defamation claim, and no reasonable viewer could interpret it as advocating persecution or genocide.

Despite these legal woes, Trump has not publicly commented on the ruling. Newsweek reached out to his campaign for a response but has not received any official statement. Nevertheless, Trump remains a prominent figure in the Republican Party and the frontrunner for the 2024 presidential nomination. His popularity among GOP voters persists, especially as the anti-Trump vote splits among various candidates. Trump’s primary rival, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, has also faced campaign challenges recently.

Political analyst Craig Agranoff pointed out that these legal setbacks should serve as a reminder that no one is above the law. He questioned how much more legal trouble Trump can endure before voters start turning against him, but also acknowledged that the latest developments may not bode well for the former president.

In the midst of these legal troubles, special counsel Jack Smith unsealed a new indictment on Thursday, revealing three additional criminal charges against Trump. These charges are related to his alleged mishandling of classified documents and attempts to obstruct the investigation into returning them to the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA).

The new charges include two counts of obstructing justice, alleging that Trump attempted to delete security footage at his Mar-a-Lago residence in Palm Beach, Florida, last summer during the DOJ’s investigation. Additionally, prosecutors charged him with one count of willfully retaining a top-secret document based on an audiotape of him speaking with guests at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, in July 2021. Previously, Smith had indicted Trump on 37 counts, including 31 counts of willful retention of national defense information, all related to the classified documents case. In June, the former president pleaded not guilty to those charges.

Moreover, Trump also faces another indictment at the state level by a Manhattan grand jury, accusing him of falsifying business records related to a hush money payment to adult film star Stormy Daniels. He has pleaded not guilty to this charge as well. Additionally, there are expectations of forthcoming charges from Fulton County’s District Attorney Fani Willis in Georgia, related to Trump’s alleged efforts to manipulate the state’s election results in his favor during the 2020 presidential election.

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