Judge dismisses Nunes's defamation suit against Washington Post

A federal judge dismissed Rep. Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesMcCarthy unveils House GOP task forces, chairs Former GOP operative installed as NSA top lawyer resigns Sunday shows preview: Russia, US exchange sanctions; tensions over policing rise; vaccination campaign continues MORE's (R-Calif.) defamation lawsuit against The Washington Post this week.

The dismissal is the latest development in a string of lawsuits Nunes has filed against major news outlets.

Nunes filed the lawsuit in March over a story published in the Post about a conversation Nunes had with President TrumpDonald TrumpSanders: Reinstating SALT deduction 'sends a terrible, terrible message' GOP braces for wild week with momentous vote One quick asylum fix: How Garland can help domestic violence survivors MORE about an intelligence briefing.


The article, titled “Senior intelligence official told lawmakers that Russia wants to see Trump reelected,” claimed that intelligence official Shelby Pierson told members of the House Intelligence Committee that Russia had "developed a preference" for Trump.

The story, citing a person familiar with the matter, said Trump “learned about Pierson’s remarks from Rep. Devin Nunes (Calif.), the committee’s ranking Republican and a staunch Trump ally.”

The article claimed that when Trump learned of the analysis, he grew angry at then-acting Director of National Intelligence Joseph MaguireJoseph MaguireJudge dismisses Nunes's defamation suit against Washington Post Retired Navy admiral behind bin Laden raid says he voted for Biden Congressional Democrats request FBI briefing on foreign election interference efforts MORE.

D.C. District Judge Amit Mehta sided with the Post on Thursday, writing in his ruling that the newspaper did not act "with 'actual malice,' that is, with 'knowledge that it was false or with reckless disregard of whether it was false or not.'"

Mehta, an Obama appointee, noted the newspaper's position that the article did not report when the president learned of the briefing from Nunes or how he could’ve “conveyed the information” to Trump on a different day.

Kris Coratti, vice president of communications for the Post, told The Hill, “We are pleased with the outcome.”


The Hill has reached out to Nunes’s office for comment.

Nunes, a staunch Trump ally, has filed multiple lawsuits against several media outlets and other companies in recent years, including CNNEsquire and Twitter.

A federal judge ruled in June that the congressman could not sue Twitter over parody accounts that post in character as Nunes's cow and mother.