On Friday, the strangely litigious Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Calif.) lost in court, again. U.S. District Court Judge Laura Taylor Swain, who serves in the Southern District of New York, threw out a lawsuit from Nunes in which he alleged that CNN perpetrated libel against him via reporting on an allegation that Nunes met with a Ukrainian prosecutor in 2018 in an effort to produce so-called dirt against the Bidens. CNN didn’t vouch for the truthfulness of the allegation — they merely reported the allegation’s existence. In response, Nunes sought a whopping $435 million in damages, which is wild.
Nunes lost his lawsuit on the issue of which laws should apply to the proceedings. He claimed that the court should apply the laws of Virginia or Washington, D.C., to the case because of his service as a Congressman in the area, but the judge said that the laws of California — Nunes’s home state — should be applied. Swain partially wrote as follows:
‘Plaintiff… argues that, if the Court were to look to the place where he suffered the greatest injury, the laws of either Virginia or the District of Columbia should apply because that is where he performs his role overseeing the activities of the Intelligence Community. Nunes does not proffer any additional facts that support his conclusory statement that he suffered substantial injury in either Virginia or District of Columbia, much less a greater injury there than in the home state that sends him to Congress as the representative of his district. His Amended Complaint alleges that he is a citizen of California and details his long family ties with, and extensive political service in and for, the state of California and its citizens.’
This newly defeated lawsuit is not the first similar case that Nunes has brought against a political opponent. Just this month, a federal judge dismissed a lawsuit that Nunes filed against Fusion GPS, a firm that worked on opposition research against Trump during the 2016 presidential election cycle. In the lawsuit, Nunes “accused Fusion GPS… of harassing him and trying to impede his panel’s investigation into Russian election interference,” a report from the Associated Press explains.
In another case, a federal judge removed Twitter as a defendant from a defamation case that Nunes brought over parody accounts on the platform going by “Devin Nunes’ Cow” and “Devin Nunes’ Mom.” Neither account has actual connections to the Congressman — they’re satirical in nature.