MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough cut off a New York Times (NYT) reporter Wednesday to defend Newsmax amid accusations of defamation.
Dominion Voting Systems filed the suit against Fox News in 2021 alleging that the outlet falsely criticized and “deeply damaged” the company’s reputation following the 2020 presidential election. Fox reached a settlement with Dominion on Tuesday for $787.5 million only minutes before the defamation trial was set to begin. Dominion initially demanded $1.6 billion.
Scarborough cut off NYT writer Jim Rutenberg as he discussed the sum paid out before noting other cases ongoing.
“Well, first of all, Dominion has several other cases going, there’s Mike Lindell, Newsmax, and then you have separately these SmartMatic suits. I don’t see how Newsmax can get through a case the way Fox just did. I mean, look at the resources that Rupert Murdoch had, [Newsmax is] a smaller company. They don’t have the money to settle the way Rupert Murdoch did,” Rutenberg said before Scarborough cut in. (RELATED: ‘This Is A Victory For Fox’: CNN’s Alisyn Camerota Laments Fox News’ Dominion Settlement)
“Can I ask about that though, really quickly, about Newsmax, you had that moment with that anchor when Mike Lindell, Mr. Pillow, came on and started lying, the anchor literally got out of his chair and basically in the words of Eric Cartman, he basically said, ‘Screw you guys, I’m going home.’ He got up and walked off the set. Doesn’t that show that Newsmax at least tried to move beyond and made their apologies and try to mitigate any possible damages?”
“Well, that was certainly a moment and yeah, but the thing that surprises me, Joe, is that we see those moments and then I don’t know – it never seems to be lasting across this part of the media sphere, we’ll see right,” Rutenberg said.
Newsmax’s Bob Sellers stormed off set mid-air in 2021 after Lindell said he had “100% proof” of election fraud with Dominion. Sellers quickly tried to jump in, saying that Newsmax had not been able to verify those allegations. Lindell then started alleging Newsmax was trying to silence him, with Sellers trying to calm him down. After nearly three minutes, Sellers walked off set as Lindell continued making the allegations.
Fox News is also facing a second defamation suit from Smartmatic, another voting technology company that alleges Fox News’ coverage was damaging, though a trial date has not been set.