After the Nov. 3 election, attorney Sidney Powell filed several lawsuits that challenged the presidential election results. In early January, Dominion Voting Systems accused Powell of defamation and filed a lawsuit seeking $1.3 billion in damages.
Powell has submitted a filing in a Washington D.C. federal court, asking that Dominion’s lawsuit be dismissed. In the court filing, Powell argues that the case was filed in the wrong jurisdiction adding that her speech against the company is protected under the First Amendment. She had alleged that Dominion was involved in rigging the 2020 presidential race. Powell claims that her statements on election fraud were her legal theories and opinions on a matter that was of utmost concern to the public.
“Those members of the public who were interested in the controversy were free to, and did, review that evidence and reached their own conclusions — or awaited resolution of the matter by the courts before making up their minds… Even assuming, arguendo, that each of the statements alleged in the complaint could be proved true or false, no reasonable person would conclude that the statements were truly statements of fact,” the filing states.
In Dominion’s lawsuit, the plaintiffs characterize Powell’s statements using terms like ‘outlandish claims,’ ‘wild accusations,’ ‘impossible,’ and ‘inherently improbable.’ Powell argues that such characterizations only support her position that her statements against the company will be seen by reasonable people only as claims that require “testing by the courts through the adversary process.”
The Dominion lawsuit stated that Trump’s endorsement emboldened Powell to spread her accusations. In a statement, the company said that Powell lied about possessing a recording she never had, lied about recounts of paper ballots, disregarded election experts who refuted her claims, and linked Dominion to a Venezuelan dictator who was highly hostile to American democracy. At the time of the filing, Dominion CEO John Poulos also indicated the possibility of suing Trump.
Michigan county avoids Dominion systems
Commissioners of Antrim County, Michigan, have decided not to use Dominion voting machines in the upcoming May 4 primary elections. A proposal was put up to apportion $5,080 to reinstall the company’s election management system on tabulators and computers across the county. However, it was shot down by the commissioners unanimously. Instead, they agreed to hand-count the votes.
The commissioners were apprehensive that using the reprogrammed machines would violate an existing court order.
“If we use them, we have to delete them, which is contradictory to a court order… We can’t delete the data that’s on the machines. If you use the current machines, they need to be swiped; they need to be cleared. And we can’t do that,” Commissioner Terry VanAlstine said in a statement.
However, the decision to hand-count ballots may violate state laws. The commissioners hope that state officials understand their situation and make an exception.