- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 3, 2020

President Trump’s reelection campaign filed a libel lawsuit on Tuesday against The Washington Post, alleging that it falsely published two news stories as fact about a conspiracy with Russia.

Following last week’s libel suit against The New York Times, the president’s campaign said The Post intentionally published false allegations about Russia in stories written by Greg Sargent and Paul Waldman last summer.

“The statements were and are 100 percent false and defamatory,” said senior campaign legal adviser Jenna Ellis. “The complaint alleges The Post was aware of the falsity at the time it published them, but did so for the intentional purpose of hurting the campaign, while misleading its own readers in the process. The campaign files suit to publicly establish the truth and seek appropriate legal remedies for the harm caused by false reporting.”

The president has feuded publicly with the Post and owner Jeff Bezos, repeatedly criticizing its coverage of his administration. In the eight-page complaint, the campaign’s lawyers say the Post published an article by Mr. Sargent on June 13, 2019, containing the defamatory claim that special counsel Robert Mueller concluded the campaign “tried to conspire with” a “sweeping and systematic” attack by Russia against the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

It said the Mueller probe concluded two months earlier that “there was no conspiracy between the campaign and the Russian government, and no United States person intentionally coordinated with Russia’s efforts to interfere with the 2016 election.”

The suit states that another article, written by Mr. Waldman on June 20, 2019, contained the false and defamatory statement, “who knows what sort of aid Russia and North Korea will give to the Trump campaign, now that he has invited them to offer their assistance?”

The lawsuit alleges “extensive evidence that The Post is extremely biased against the campaign, and against Republicans in general.”

“This evidence includes, among other things, the fact that The Post has endorsed the Democrat in every United States presidential election since it started endorsing a presidential candidate in 1976, with the exception of 1988 when The Post did not endorse any candidate,” the lawsuit states.

It also claims that Mr. Sargent and Mr. Waldman “are extremely biased against the campaign.”

• Dave Boyer can be reached at dboyer@washingtontimes.com.

Copyright © 2023 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

Please read our comment policy before commenting.

Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide