A judge dropped Trump’s $475 million defamation suit against CNN.
Trump sued CNN last year and argued the network defamed him when they likened him to Adolf Hitler.
US District Judge Raag Singhal, a Trump appointee, dismissed the lawsuit with prejudice late Friday night.
“Being ‘Hitler-like’ is not a verifiable statement of fact that would support a defamation claim,” Singhal wrote. “CNN’s statements while repugnant, were not, as a matter of law, defamatory.”
A federal judge late Friday dismissed Donald Trump’s $475 million defamation lawsuit against CNN, in which the former president argued that the cable network’s statements about his false 2020 election fraud claims likened him to Adolf Hitler.
In the lawsuit, Trump’s team argued that CNN writers and television anchors’ use of the phrase the “Big Lie,” in five specific incidents, incited “readers and viewers to hate, contempt, distrust, ridicule, and even fear” him. But U.S. District Judge Raag Singhal, who Trump appointed in 2019, reasoned that because all of CNN’s statements were opinion, Trump could not legally sue the network for defamation.
“The Court finds Nazi references in the political discourse (made by whichever ‘side’) to be odious and repugnant. But bad rhetoric is not defamation when it does not include false statements of fact.” Singhal wrote. “CNN’s use of the phrase ‘the Big Lie’ in connection with Trump’s election challenges does not give rise to a plausible inference that Trump advocates the persecution and genocide of Jews or any other group of people. No reasonable viewer could (or should) plausibly make that reference.”
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