Voting software firm Smartmatic and pro-Trump conspiracy network One America News have reached a confidential settlement in the defamation lawsuit accusing OAN of peddling lies about the 2020 presidential election.

The dismissal of the complaint was filed in the U.S. District Court of the District of Columbia on Tuesday.

“The case has been resolved pursuant to a confidential agreement,” OAN attorney Chip Babcock said about the settlement.

“Smartmatic has resolved its litigation against OANN through a confidential settlement,” Smartmatic lawyer Erik Connolly noted in a statement.

OAN President Charles Herring and network founder Robert Herring, whose Herring Networks run the right-wing channel, referred The Daily Beast’s request for comment to Babcock. “As a general policy, the Company does not comment on legal issues,” Charles Herring said. Neither law firm provided details of the settlement.

The agreement between Smartmatic and OAN comes almost a full year after Dominion Voting Systems, another voting technology company, was paid an eye-popping $787.5 million to settle its defamation lawsuit against Fox News.

Dominion alleged that the conservative cable giant knowingly aired baseless conspiracies that the company’s voting machines “stole” the 2020 presidential election from Donald Trump. According to Dominion’s lawsuit, Fox News peddled Trump’s election lies in an effort to boost sagging ratings after disgruntled MAGA viewers fled the network for smaller pro-Trump channels OAN and Newsmax, who were willing to amplify the then-president’s unhinged claims.

Smartmatic, along with Dominion, was also caught up in Trumpworld’s conspiracy theories about voting machines stealing millions of votes for Joe Biden. In November 2021, Smartmatic sued OAN and Newsmax. The company had already filed a $2.7 billion complaint against Fox News, several of its hosts, and numerous Trump associates in February 2021. (Fox News would incidentally part ways with Trump-boosting host Lou Dobbs the day after Smartmatic filed its lawsuit.)

While the company has reached a settlement with OAN, the company still has pending lawsuits against Fox News, Newsmax and several other Trump allies.

In its lawsuit against OAN, which gleefully promoted false claims about rigged voting machines and widespread election fraud, Smartmatic said that the little-watched network “victimized” the company “by spreading false information” about the election “in their efforts to increase viewership and revenue.”

“The damage to Smartmatic from this parallel universe of lies and disinformation has reverberated across the United States and in dozens of countries around the world,” Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica said at the time. “The global repercussions for our company cannot be overstated.”

The network wasn’t just pushing these election lies on its airwaves, either. Christina Bobb, then an OAN host, worked with then-Trump lawyer Rudy Giuliani on Trump’s efforts to overturn the election while she was still anchoring a network show. In fact, in a 2021 deposition, Giuliani claimed that the Trump campaign had veto power over Bobb’s OAN stories.

The settlement between OAN and Smartmatic comes months after the voting software firm accused OAN executives of soliciting “stolen” passwords of Smartmatic employees and forwarding them on to ex-Trump campaign lawyer Sidney Powell and election-denying pillow salesman Mike Lindell in January 2021. Lindell and Powell, who have been sued by both Dominion and Smartmatic, were two of the most prominent purveyors of election fraud conspiracy theories following Trump’s loss.

This isn’t the first defamation lawsuit tied to its 2020 election lies that the conspiratorial network has settled. Last September, for instance, OAN and its star correspondent Chanel Rion reached a settlement with former Dominion executive Eric Coomer, who they accused of working in concert with antifa activists to rig the election against Trump. Additionally, in May 2022, OAN publicly admitted there was “no widespread voter fraud” in Georgia after reaching a settlement with two of the state’s election workers who had been falsely accused by the channel of engaging in ballot fraud.

OAN’s extreme programming, promotion of unhinged conspiracy theories and cartoonish Trump sycophancy have resulted in the channel being almost completely unavailable on cable and satellite providers. After its parent company AT&T largely propped up the ultra-conservative channel for years, DirecTV dropped the truth-defying network from its airwaves in early 2022.

Since then, other pay-TV carriers have distanced themselves from the network, leaving the channel in dire financial straits and teetering on the edge of extinction.

Share.
2024 © Network Today. All Rights Reserved.