A federal judge in Washington ruled Dominion Voting Systems’s defamation lawsuits may proceed against three Donald Trump allies on Aug. 11.
Dominion is suing lawyer Sidney Powell, attorney Rudy Giuliani, and MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell for $1.3 billion. The business claims it suffered damages after the previous president and his supporters accused the 2020 election of being electronically rigged.
The trio filed motions to dismiss the court cases. However, Trump-appointed U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols still wants to hear the matters, because the November election was not merely “opinions” or “legal theories” that “cannot be proven true or false” according to the decision.
Nichols claimed he cannot “rely” on the evidence Lindell provides to support his claim, because it is beyond the scope of the original complaint.
The judge rejected any suggestion the First Amendment protects the trio’s right to free speech. This is because there is “no blanket immunity” in these lawsuits.
He also dismissed Giuliani’s claim that Dominion did not provide enough detail about exactly how it suffered $1.3 billion in damages.
Lawyer Howard Kleinhendler, who is advising Powell, expressed disappointment about the decision.
“We now look forward to litigating this case on its merits, and proving that Ms. Powell’s statements were accurate and certainly not published with malice,” he said according to Reuters.
According to the Washington Examiner, Powell was the first relevant individual Dominion sued in January. The company launched legal action against Giuliani weeks later, followed by Lindell in mid-February. Lindell also filed multiple lawsuits against Dominion.