Newsmax apologizes to Dominion Voting Systems employee
Newsmax issued a public apology to a Dominion Voting Systems employee on Friday after airing false allegations against the worker involving the 2020 presidential election.
The conservative network said in a statement posted to its website that it found “no evidence” backing up claims that employee Eric Coomer had manipulated voting machines or votes as previously alleged.
“On behalf of Newsmax, we would like to apologize for any harm that our reporting of the allegations against Dr. Coomer may have caused to Dr. Coomer and his family,” Newsmax said in the statement.
A spokesperson for Dominion declined to comment to The Hill. Newsmax also did not immediately respond to requests for comment.
The AP reported that Coomer, Dominion’s director of product strategy and security, has subsequently dropped Newsmax from a defamation lawsuit after the network apologized.
Coomer had filed the suit against Newsmax last December and also named One America News Network, OANN correspondent Chanel Rion, former President Trump’s then-personal attorney Rudy Giuliani, as well as attorney and Trump defender Sidney Powell, among others, as defendants.
Newsmax’s coverage of conspiracy theories forced Coomer into hiding, his suit claimed. In the complaint, Coomer said he was targeted with death threats and harassment and suffered “untold damage to his reputation as a national expert on voting systems.”
Newsmax wrote in its apology Friday that it “has found no evidence that Dr. Coomer interfered with Dominion voting machines or voting software in any way, nor that Dr. Coomer ever claimed to have done so.”
This is the second time Newsmax has walked back allegations it spread during its coverage of the presidential election and Trump’s false claims of widespread voter fraud.
Last December, it issued a similar clarification after electronic voting system company Smartmatic issued legal notices and demanded retractions from three conservative outlets, including Newsmax.
“There are several facts our viewers and readers should be aware of,” the network wrote at the time. “No evidence has been offered that Dominion or Smartmatic used software or reprogrammed software that manipulated votes in the 2020 election.”
Separately, Dominion Voting Company has filed a $1.6 billion defamation suit against Fox News, a $1.3 billion suit against Powell and a $1.3 billion defamation suit against MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell, a vocal supporter of Trump. Dominion has not sued the former president but one of its attorneys said in March the company has not ruled out the possibility.
Fox News said in a statement that it is “proud of our 2020 election coverage, which stands in the highest tradition of American journalism, and will vigorously defend against this baseless lawsuit in court.”
Powell has also filed for dismissal, and in a motion to a federal district court in Washington, D.C. argued that Dominion filed its suit in the wrong jurisdiction and that her statements about Dominion are protected by the First Amendment.
Lindell, meanwhile, filed a $1.6 billion countersuit accusing Dominion of “debasing the legal system.”
“Dominion’s purpose is to silence debate; to eliminate any challenge to the 2020 presidential election; and to cancel and destroy anyone who speaks out against Dominion’s work on behalf of the government in administering the election,” Lindell’s countersuit reads.
–Updated on May 2 at 8:44 a.m.