Rachel Maddow Defends OAN Defamation Suit Re ‘Russian Propanda’ Claim – Variety

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An lawyer for Rachel Maddow requested a San Diego decide on Tuesday to throw out a defamation go well with introduced by One America Information, the conservative community often cited by President Donald Trump.

Herring Networks, the company guardian of OAN, filed the go well with final September, alleging that Maddow defamed them when she mentioned the community “actually actually is paid Russian propaganda.”

Maddow was referring to a July 22, 2019, report within the Day by day Beast, which revealed that an OAN contributor was additionally on the payroll of Sputnik, the Kremlin-owned information website. OAN says that Maddow’s declare was false, inasmuch as OAN will not be paid by the Russian authorities.

Attorneys for NBC, Comcast and Maddow are searching for to strike the criticism beneath the California anti-SLAPP statute. On Tuesday, lawyer Theodore Boutrous urged Decide Cynthia Bashant to take the assertion in its full context.

“She’s giving her soak up entertaining method,” Boutrous argued. “She’s chuckling — she’s mocking the entire state of affairs for its absurdity.”

Boutrous argued that Maddow was giving her opinion primarily based on the undisputed information within the Day by day Beast article, and that due to this fact her remarks are protected beneath the First Modification.

Amnon Siegel, arguing for Herring Networks, argued that the interpretation of Maddow’s comment must be left as much as a jury. He additionally pressured that Maddow used the phrases “actually” and “actually” with a view to convey a truth, slightly than an opinion.

“It is a assertion that actually is provably false,” Siegel argued.

Herring Networks had submitted a 20-page report from Stefan Th. Gries, a professor of linguistics at UC Santa Barbara, who opined that it’s “most unlikely that a mean or affordable/strange viewer would take into account the sentence in query to be an announcement of opinion.”

Bashant mentioned she wouldn’t depend on the report, saying it was “largely irrelevant.” She additionally appeared to credit score Boutrous’ argument that the assertion needed to be considered in context.

“It’s clearly her present,” Bashant mentioned. “She’s stating information. She type a laughs by means of it. It’s a shiny story.”

The decide mentioned she would concern a ruling at a later date.

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