Newsmax TV Debunks Its Own False Claims About Voting Companies Following Legal Threats

 

Newsmax TV aired a stunning fact-check on Monday of claims made on the network about voting companies used in the 2020 presidential election.

The conservative network has seen its ratings surge in the aftermath of the November election thanks to coverage that embraced conspiracy theories about the vote. Supporters of President Donald Trump flocked to Newsmax, and smaller rival OAN, for alternate news coverage doubting that the president had lost the election to Joe Biden.

Many of the conspiracy theories used to support the claim that the election was stolen from Trump involved two voting system companies, Smartmatic and Dominion. Allies of the president made a series of false claims about those companies, which included the allegation that they worked together to change votes from Trump to Biden.

In response to that coverage, Florida-based Smartmatic sent retraction demands to Fox News, Newsmax and OAN for airing “false and defamatory statements” about the company, threatening legal action as a last resort. Dominion has also threatened legal action against the president’s campaign.

Fox News was first to air a fact-check, on Friday, of claims made about the voting systems companies. The strange segment, in which an unknown voice asks a serious of questions about voting conspiracy theories to an elections expert, aired on shows of Fox News hosts Lou Dobbs, Jeanine Pirro and Maria Bartiromo. All hosts were named in Smartmatic’s demand for retractions.

Newsmax TV aired its own segment fact-checking claims made about those companies on Monday.

“Since election day, various guests, attorneys and elected officials have appeared on Newsmax TV and offered opinions and claims about Smartmatic and Dominion Systems, both companies that offer voting software in the U.S.,” Newsmax TV host John Tabacco said in the segment.

“Newsmax would like to clarify its news coverage and note that it has not reported as true certain claims made about these companies,” he continued. “There are several facts our viewers and readers should be aware. Newsmax has found no evidence either Dominion or Smartmatic owns the other, or has any business association with each other.”

The host continued to debunk a series of claims made about both companies on Newsmax, iterating each time that the claims were made without evidence.

“No evidence has been offered that Dominion or Smartmatic used software or reprogrammed software that manipulated votes in the 2020 election,” he said. “Smartmatic has stated its software was only used in the 2020 election in Los Angeles, and was not used in any battleground state contested by the Trump campaign and Newsmax has no evidence to the contrary.”

He also said the network had no evidence to support conspiracies — floated by former Trump lawyer Sidney Powell and others — that the companies were being controlled by George Soros or the late Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez.

Smartmatic has said the disinformation campaign destroyed its international reputation, and estimated its losses in revenue and valuation to be in “the hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars.”

In an interview with the New York Times on Sunday, First Amendment lawyer Floyd Abrams said a potential lawsuit would be “highly dangerous” to Fox, Newsmax and OAN.

“The repeated accusations against both companies are plainly defamatory and surely have done enormous reputational and financial harm to both,” he said.

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Aidan McLaughlin is the Editor of Mediaite. Send tips via email: aidan@mediaite.com. Ask for Signal. Follow him on Twitter: @aidnmclaughlin