Did Fox News throw Donald Trump under the bus in the defamation case of the Century?

Just as the jurors were selected, Rupert Murdoch settled the 1.6 billion case against Fox. The news comes a day after Trump told him, “Rupert, just tell the truth, and good things will happen,” on April 17, 2023. Soon after the settlement, Tucker Carlson was fired. 

The defamation case of the Century

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Dominion Voting Systems, a voting machine company, sued Fox News for defamation demanding $1.6 billion. The trial had already started when the parties settled. The owner of the right-wing media, Australian-American media mogul Rupert Murdoch, was ordered to pay $787.5 million to Dominion. 

Dominion’s lawyers speak up

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Delaware Supreme Court Judge Eric M Davis thanked the jury of 12 people ready to hear both sides in the defamation trial. Once the sides settled the case, an attorney for Dominion, Justin Nelson, said the agreement represented “accountability.” He told the press, “The truth matters. Lies have consequences.”

Fox News also issued a statement

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Fox News statement said, “We are pleased to have reached a settlement of our dispute with Dominion Voting Systems. We acknowledge the Court’s rulings finding certain claims about Dominion to be false. This settlement reflects Fox’s continued commitment to the highest journalistic standards.”

Donald Trump was in the middle of this defamation trial

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Fox News alleged that Dominion’s voting machines were rigged to stop Donald Trump from winning elections in 2020. Dominion presented 20 clear statements from Fox News which were the bases for the defamation lawsuit.

Trump’s message to Murdoch

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Writing on his social network, Truth Social, Trump shared that Fox News would be “in big trouble if they do not expose the truth on cheating in the 2020 election.” Trump added, “Rupert, just tell the truth, and good things will happen.”

Trump shared that Murdoch knows the truth

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Additionally, Trump wrote, “They should do what’s right for America. When Rupert Murdoch says that there was no cheating in light of the massive proof that was there, it is ridiculous and very harmful to the Fox case. Perhaps he should say that ‘he just didn’t know,’ but that is hard to believe. The election of 2020 was rigged and stollen…you know it, & so does everyone else!”

The night before the trial

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The settlement came as a surprise because it did not happen earlier. But, Fox News attorneys filed documents appealing to the judge to allow them to present evidence arguing that Trump’s rhetoric primarily inspired Fox’s allegedly defamatory claims against Dominion’s voting machines.

As president, Trump had the power

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Attorneys for Fox argued that Trum’s statements were trustworthy since he was the president at the time. Earlier in 2023, the public learned that Murdoch and the former Fox star Tucker Carlson privately bashed Trump, despite the well-known Fox rhetorics.

Fox’s previous statement

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Fox News previously issued a statement expressing that the network is “proud of our 2020 election coverage, which stands in the highest tradition of American journalism, and will vigorously defend against this baseless lawsuit in court.”

People were waiting for Trump’s next step

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After the news broke out, all eyes were on Truth Social. Instead of commenting on the settlement, both Marjorie Taylor Greene, Trump’s son, Donald Jr., as well as several other Republicans, shared statements condemning President Joe Biden.

Firing Tucker Carlson 

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Another bombshell dropped after the settlement, though Dominion claimed it was unrelated to the legal issues. Carlson was fired a month after his former head of booking, Abby Grossberg, claimed she was subjected to a hostile work environment. 

Trump was not happy 

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Trump said he was “shocked,” while his political followers, including Lauren Boebert and Marjorie Taylor Greene, praised the former Fox host. Though he praised Trump publically, Carlson allegedly privately called him “demonic.”

Firing Carlson made all talk about the settlement almost disappear 

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After firing Carlson, Fox did not change their rhetoric. They still had Hannity. Despite remaining loyal to GOP, Fox, and Trump are not as tight as they were. Or so it seems. 

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