Judge rules in Sarah Palin’s defamation case against NYT — Analysis

A federal judge is throwing out the libel case against the paper, citing no evidence of ‘actual malice’

US District Court Judge Jed Rakoff has thrown out former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin’s defamation suit against the New York Times. With the jury still out, the judge said the Republican politician’s legal team failed to prove the paper actually meant to defame her.

Palin, who was John McCain’s running mate on the 2008 Republican ticket, sued over the 2017 Times editorial linking her to a 2011 shooting spree that left then-Congresswoman Gabby Giffords (D-Arizona) gravely wounded and six other people killed. Less than a year before Giffords’ shooting, Palin’s political action committee SarahPAC published a map using a crosshairs image to point out Democrat-held congressional districts.

The map and photography were not in direct correlation, however the 2017 Times editorial noted that “link to political incitement was clear.”This was in response to another shooting in which a Democrat attacked Republican legislators and injured Representative Steve Scalise (R–Louisiana).

Why Sarah Palin's defamation case against the New York Times is important

According to Judge Rakoff, Palin’s lawyers did not provide enough evidence that the Times had knowingly published something that was false, under the “actual malice”In a 1964 case involving the newspaper, the same standard was established. Jurors in Palin’s will continue to deliberate her case, but Rakoff said that a judgment in the former governor’s favor will inevitably lead to an appeal. 

Palin described the Times as “a” in her testimony. “Goliath”That spread “lies”Information about her. Palin’s lawyer Kenneth Turkel argued that the former governor was far from public life when the Times published their story. 

“Sarah Palin has done nothing to deserve this…All they had to do was dislike her a little less and we’re not sitting here today,”He argued. 

The Times corrected the editorial in the morning following publication.

“An earlier version of this editorial incorrectly stated that a link existed between political incitement and the 2011 shooting of Representative Gabby Giffords,”Correction: The correction is admitting “no such link was established.”

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