×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Donald Trump Threatens to ‘Open Up Libel Laws,’ Go After Media As President

Donald Trump, speaking at a rally in Fort Worth, Texas on Friday, once again took aim at the media, threatening to “open up libel laws” to make it easier to sue outlets like The New York Times and the Washington Post.

Trump made his comments after protesters interrupted his rally, and cameras panned toward the demonstrators.

Criticizing The New York Times for its coverage, Trump said, “We are going up libel laws, folks, and we are going to have people sue you like you have never been sued before.”

Trump also singled out the Washington Post, accusing Jeff Bezos of buying the paper “to help Amazon.”

There is no federal libel law, but a series of landmark Supreme Court decisions have generally defined the parameters of state statutes governing defamation and slander claims.

At the rally, Trump continued his attacks on Marco Rubio, at one point taking a water bottle and spilling it around the stage. He was mocking Rubio’s propensity for sweating.

Update: David Chavern, Newspaper Association of America President & CEO, issued a statement in which he said, “If Mr. Trump wants to try to bully news organizations into providing reporting that he likes, then he will have to do a whole lot better than making weak, misguided promises about changes to a law that aren’t needed in the first place.”

“The first thing to understand is that under the landmark Supreme Court case of New York Times vs. Sullivan, it was determined that news organizations could be found liable when they deliberately publish false information.  The specific standard is ‘actual malice.’  So if Mr. Trump wants to address media organizations that ‘write purposely negative and horrible, false articles’ then the law is already established as to his rights to do that.

“But we all know that Mr. Trump isn’t interested in legalities in this case.  He is clearly just trying to intimidate news organizations and bully them in providing more positive coverage of him and his candidacy for President.  He should pick a different target.  Newspapers have dealt with more intimidating figures than Mr. Trump.”

 

 

More Biz

  • Mo'Nique

    Mo'Nique Files Race and Sex Discrimination Suit Against Netflix

    Mo’Nique filed a discrimination suit against Netflix on Thursday, alleging that the streaming service broke the law when it gave her a lowball offer for a comedy special. The comedian — whose legal name is Monique Hicks — accused Netflix of race and sex discrimination. In January 2018, Mo’Nique called for a boycott of Netflix, [...]

  • Saugus High School

    Shooting at California's Saugus High School Leaves Two Dead, Multiple Injured

    Two teenagers died and three others were injured after a shooter opened fire on Thursday morning at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, about 40 miles north of Los Angeles. The shooter, a 16-year-old student, pulled a handgun from his backpack and opened fire on five other students on the school’s quad around 7:30 a.m., [...]

  • Variety New Leaders Agents and Managers

    Variety's New Leaders 2019: These Representatives Are Making a Mark on the Industry

    Every year, Variety seeks to identify the next generation of leaders in the entertainment business, looking for representatives in the creative community, film, TV, music and digital. This year’s group has a heavy New York focus: We selected executives from forward thinking companies such as Spotify, Group Nine and Endeavor Audio, as well as writers [...]

  • Lilly Burns Tony Hernandez

    Jax Media Soars by Amplifying Unique Voices of Auteur TV

    Jax Media has emerged during the past few years as one of television’s busiest and buzziest production companies. The New York-based company headed by four partners — Tony Hernandez, Lilly Burns, John Skidmore and Brooke Posch — has an enviable track record of scouting new voices and executing stylish shows on a less-than-stratospheric budgets. The [...]

  • ELAINE WELTEROTH Variety New Leaders

    Variety's New Leaders: Ronan Farrow, Elaine Welteroth Are Making a Big Social Impact

    Every year, Variety seeks to identify the next generation of leaders in the entertainment business, looking for representatives in the creative community, film, TV, music and digital. This year’s group has a heavy New York focus: We selected executives from forward thinking companies such as Spotify, Group Nine and Endeavor Audio, as well as writers [...]

  • Tommy Thayer, Gene Simmons, Eric Singer,

    Kiss Reveal Final Dates of ‘End of the Road’ Farewell Tour

    Just hours after cancelling their Australia tour due to Paul Stanley’s bout with influenza, Kiss have announced the “last legs” of their “End of the Road” farewell tour. According to the announcement, the trek will officially come to a close on July 21, 2021 at a location in the band’s hometown of New York City [...]

  • Bob IgerSimon Weisenthal Gala honoring Bob

    Bob Iger Joins MasterClass Roster for Course on Business Strategy and Leadership

    Disney chairman-CEO Bob Iger has signed on to the MasterClass digital education service, offering a course in business strategy and leadership. The course, available as of Thursday, will detail Iger’s view on the importance of taking bold steps and embracing mistakes in business. Iger also promises to dig into “case studies” of some of Disney’s [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content