Tucker Carlson Producers Sought In $1.6B Dominion Defamation Case

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As Dominion Voting Systems — the elections technology company that was the subject of numerous pro-Trump conspiracy theories after the last election — pursues its defamation case against Fox News, the company is now seeking pre-trial depositions from producers for Tucker Carlson and someone who worked as a producer for Lou Dobbs, whose Fox show was cancelled after a related defamation lawsuit emerged.

Trump and his allies alleged that Dominion was a key player in a wide-ranging election-rigging scheme targeting the now former president. No real-world evidence of systematic fraud or Dominion’s participation in it ever emerged, and despite false claims of inappropriately limited investigations into the issue, thorough examinations were conducted. Specifically, Dominion is seeking depositions of Tucker producers Justin Wells, Eldad Yaron, and Alex Pfieffer alongside ex-Dobbs producer John Fawcett. The company is pursuing these depositions by the end of September. The original lawsuit from Dominion targeting Fox seeks $1.6 billion in damages amid continuing impacts to the company from election-related lies spread at Fox and elsewhere. Dominion even had to deal with security issues, doling out more than half a million on security costs as zealous Trump supporters issued death threats amid the circulating lies.

The lawsuit from Dominion, amid which Carlson himself was already also summoned for a deposition, alleges financial considerations drove Fox’s usage of election fraud-related conspiracy theories — which, at an early point, were clearly untrue — in its reporting. The outlet “sold a false story of election fraud in order to serve its own commercial purposes, severely injuring Dominion in the process,” according to the Dominion case. Fox is claiming freedom of the press in response to Dominion’s complaints, although a trial on whether airing information potentially — and no doubt likely — known to be false constitutes something defensible by the concept of freedom of the press remains forthcoming. According to Business Insider, it’s set for April of next year. Fox Corporation, the parent company for Fox News where Rupert and Lachlan Murdoch serve in key executive roles, is also among the defendants.

Dominion already obtained millions of documents from inside Fox News as the discovery process proceeds. Fox previously formulated an estimate that the company already handed over some 4.3 million docs — evidently including communications involving company personnel. Fox is also a subject of another massive defamation lawsuit from the elections technology company Smartmatic, which was barely used during the 2020 U.S. elections but somehow also became a part of pro-Trump conspiracy theories. That case is also moving forward, with a judge recently directing that Fox begin providing what it already produced in the Dominion case, although the right-wing outlet still has the opportunity for contesting the release of specific materials. Fox was directed to begin the process of turning over materials in the unfolding Smartmatic case on the last day of this month.