Defamation Lawsuit Filed By Election Workers Taunted By Trump


Another defamation lawsuit has emerged amid the ongoing struggle to keep a handle on false claims about the integrity of last year’s presidential election, which former President Donald Trump and certain allies of his have repeatedly and falsely claimed was somehow rigged for Biden. Now, Ruby Freeman and her daughter, Shaye Moss, who worked together as election workers in Georgia under the auspices of Fulton County authorities during the 2020 election cycle, have filed a defamation lawsuit against the Gateway Pundit, a far-right, pro-Trump website that has consistently sought to tie them to non-existent election fraud. Freeman and Moss have also been targeted by longtime Trump ally Rudy Giuliani and Donald Trump himself, among others.

The New York Times identifies the Freeman and Moss suit as “among the first to be filed by individual election workers who found themselves unwittingly dragged into the alternate universe of far-right media that claimed, and still does, that Donald J. Trump won last year’s presidential election.” Claims about Freeman and Moss include that they “pulled out suitcases full of ballots and began counting those ballots without election monitors in the room,” a claim that was quickly disproved, since there remains no legitimate evidence for any of this nonsense, which has been perpetrated largely by people who could be safely described as near-clueless buffoons who don’t know what they’re talking about.

Giuliani went so far as to compare Freeman and Moss to drug dealers. As he frantically put it, referencing surveillance footage and apparently referring to Freeman and Moss or their coworkers: “Look at that woman, look at her taking those ballots out, look at them scurrying around with the ballots, nobody in the room, hiding around, they look like they’re passing out dope not just ballots.” At another point, Giuliani said that election workers were handling USB drives “like they were vials of heroin.” Eventually, Trump himself referred to Freeman a full 18 times during an infamous January phone conversation with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger (R) in which the then-president implored the top elections official to “find” enough votes to flip the state from Biden.

All of these public call-outs (a recording of the Raffensperger call eventually emerged publicly) culminated in real-world threats of violence against Freeman and Moss. At one point, NPR says, a “stranger knocked on the door at Moss’s grandmother’s, where Moss used to live, and said they were there to make a citizens’ arrest,” and there were other examples, like barrages of threatening messages. Meanwhile, Freeman said: “I want the defendants to know that my daughter and I are real people who deserve justice, and I never want them to do this to anyone else.” Read more at this link.