In a move widely viewed as an admission to lying Fox News has agreed to pay Dominion Voting Systems more than $787 million in a last-minute out-of-court settlement.
Fox News – the largest television station by viewer numbers in the U.S.A. – opted to settle rather than endure a court case.
The defamation lawsuit by Dominion Voting Systems against Fox News was settled just as the jury trial was set to begin, Tuesday, (18 April 2023).
The groundbreaking settlement “represents vindication and accountability,” Dominion lawyer Justin Nelson told reporters after emerging from the New Castle County Courthouse in Wilmington, Delaware.
“For our democracy to endure for another 250 years, and hopefully much longer, we must share a commitment to facts… Today represents a ringing endorsement for truth and for democracy.”
Earlier, Judge Eric Davis dismissed jurors in the Delaware Superior Court telling them: “The parties have resolved their case”.
Fox News said it “acknowledges the Court’s rulings finding certain claims about Dominion to be false”.
At least 20 Fox News broadcasts from late 2020 contained blatantly untrue assertions that Dominion rigged the presidential election to favour Joe Biden.
Although Fox News does not have to admit on-air that it spread lies about Dominion, the ruling effectively puts an end to false claims by Donald Trump of rigging by voting machines in the 2020 election that he lost.
In its lawsuit Dominion had asked the court for nearly double the amount in defamation damages that it agreed to settle for.