Machinery company Dominion Voting Systems is suing Trump allies for defamation

Trump has called Dominion Voting Systems “a disaster” and his supporters have pushed the conspiracy theory that the company has cut votes for Trump on its voting equipment and that has helped Dominion’s director of product strategy and security, Eric Coomer, undermine the election.

There is no evidence that Trump’s 2020 election was stolen, and his administration and election officials have called it the “safest” election in US history. President-elect Joe Biden won the popular vote with more than 7 million votes and the electoral card with 306 to 232.

The lawsuit cites as defendants the Trump campaign, Rudy Giuliani, Trump adviser Sidney Powell, conservative media outlets One America News Network and Newsmax Media, right-wing website Gateway Pundit and Colorado businessman and activist Joseph Oltmann, among others. CNN has contacted those named in the lawsuit.

In recent days – as the threat of legal action heightened – several conservative media outlets have begun to reverse some of the more outrageous claims.

In a lawsuit filed Tuesday in Colorado County Court, Coomer’s attorneys say the charges are “false and baseless” and have caused “tremendous damage to Dr. Coomer’s reputation, professional reputation, security and privacy.”

The lawsuit says the defendants “leaned heavily on false charges” from Oltmann, who claimed in interviews and social media posts that Coomer was a participant in an Antifa conference call that Oltmann said had infiltrated in September.

When asked about Antifa’s alleged appeal, Oltmann told CNN he has “a wealth of evidence” – which he has not immediately provided – and said, “The truth is the great equalizer in all of this.”

Oltmann claimed he overheard one of the speakers on the alleged phone call, identified as’ Eric from Dominion, ‘telling the participants,’ Trump is not going to win. I took care of that. ‘ Oltmann, who said he was paraphrasing the conversation, did not provide a recording of the alleged phone call, nor explained how he heard about it and gained access, according to the lawsuit.

Coomer’s lawyers have denied that the Dominion manager was aware of the alleged call, participated in it, or made any such comments.

The lawsuit also mentions many specific threats allegedly made against Coomer, saying the intimidation forced Coomer to flee his home “for fear of his safety.” Coomer has been living in hiding shortly after the election, he recently told Colorado Public Radio.

He is seeking damages, as well as the public retraction of all statements considered defamatory.

In a statement Tuesday, Coomer said the lawsuit is “ an attempt to mitigate as much as possible of the damage done to me, my family, my life, and my livelihood as a result of the myriad false public statements for which I have in one way or another was responsible for ‘manipulating’ the 2020 presidential election. “

Dominion herself is no match for the suit.

However, the Denver-based company said in a statement to CNN that “Sidney Powell and many others – including some news organizations – have trampled countless reputations while spreading their ridiculous conspiracy theories.”

Voting technology company Smartmatic, which has dealt with similar conspiracy theories, had sent a blistering legal threat to Newsmax, One America News and Fox News earlier this month, saying the outlets were helping to spread false and defamatory claims that could with basic research. be debunked. Newsmax issued a “clarification” on Monday that it has no evidence that Dominion or Smartmatic manipulated the votes in the 2020 election, and Fox aired a video package this past week debunking several claims made by its own hosts or guests.
On Saturday, Trump’s campaign legal team sent a memo to dozens of staff instructing them to keep all documents related to Dominion and Powell pending potential lawsuits by the company.

The memo, reviewed by CNN, refers to a letter Dominion sent to Powell last week demanding that she publicly withdraw her allegations and instructing campaign personnel not to alter, destroy, or delete relevant documents.

The Trump campaign once tried to distance itself from Powell after she held a conspiracy-ridden press conference with his other lawyers, Giuliani and Jenna Ellis. But since then, Powell has visited the White House at least twice, and Trump has considered appointing her as special counsel to investigate the allegations of voter fraud that his own administration says are unfounded.

CNN’s Kaitlan Collins, Kevin Liptak, Pamela Brown and Brian Rokus contributed to this report.