Newsmax, the far-right news outlet that boosted the Trump campaign’s false claims of 2020 election rigging, admitted on Friday that there was “no evidence” that an executive at Dominion Voting Systems had tampered with election results.
The statement was part of a settlement in the defamation lawsuit against Newsmax and a number of other Trump allies and conservative news outlets brought by top Dominion employee Eric Coomer. In the aftermath of the 2020 campaign, Newsmax repeatedly aired claims that Coomer had manipulated electronic voting records in favor of Biden.
The Newsmax statement admitted the company had found no evidence that Coomer interfered with the election or that he “participated in any conversation with members of ‘Antifa.” It went on, “Many of the states whose results were contested by the Trump campaign after the November 2020 election have conducted extensive recounts and audits, and each of these states certified the results as legal and final.”
Coomer reportedly reached an undisclosed financial settlement with Newsmax, and has dropped the company from his lawsuit, according to the Associated Press. The claims against others the lawsuit named, including Trump lawyers Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, and One America News Network, are ongoing.
The Newsmax lawsuit was just one several defamation actions that voting-services companies like Dominion and Smartmatic have filed against Trump supporters and far-right information outlets, alleging that the false claims have hurt the plaintiffs’ reputations and profits.
But Newsmax’s backpedaling is unlikely to curb the lasting damage of the falsehoods and conspiracy theories it helped disseminate: According to an April Reuters/Ipsos poll, 55 percent of Republicans still believe that Biden’s win was due to rigged results or illegal voting. Sixty percent believe the election was stolen from Donald Trump.