Federal judge says Sarah Palin can sue New York Times for defamation over newspaper editorial which linked her to 2011 shooting of Gabby Giffords

Sarah Palin's defamation lawsuit against The New York Times over a 2017 editorial which suggested she incited the 2011 mass shooting in Arizona which left then-Congresswoman Gabby Giffords wounded can move forward, a federal judge ruled.
US District Judge Jed Rakoff in Manhattan said that while much of Palin's case was circumstantial, it was strong enough for a jury to find the Times and former editorial page editor James Bennet acted with 'actual malice by clear and convincing evidence' in publishing the editorial.
Rakoff scheduled a February 1, 2021 trial.
'We're disappointed in the ruling but are confident we will prevail at trial when a jury hears the facts,' Times spokeswoman Danielle Rhoades-Ha said in an email.
A defamation lawsuit filed by Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska and the Republican nominee for the vice presidency in 2008, against The New York Times can proceed, a federal judge has ruled. Palin is seen above in Montgomery, Alabama, in September 2017
A defamation lawsuit filed by Sarah Palin, the former governor of Alaska and the Republican nominee for the vice presidency in 2008, against The New York Times can proceed, a federal judge has ruled. Palin is seen above in Montgomery, Alabama, in September 2017
Palin sued over a June 14, 2017, editorial by the Times titled 'America's Lethal Politics' (file image)
Palin sued over a June 14, 2017, editorial by the Times titled 'America's Lethal Politics' (file image)
Former House Rep. Gabby Giffords
The editorial referred to a January 2011 shooting where six people died and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was seriously wounded, and said Palin's political action committee had before that shooting circulated a map (above) that put 20 Democrats including Giffords under 'stylized cross hairs'
The editorial referred to a January 2011 shooting where six people died and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords (left) was seriously wounded, and said Palin's political action committee had before that shooting circulated a map (right) that put 20 Democrats including Giffords under 'stylized cross hairs.'
Palin, the 2008 Republican vice presidential candidate and former Alaska governor, sued over a June 14, 2017 editorial published after an Alexandria, Virginia, shooting that wounded four people, including then-House Majority Whip Steve Scalise.
The editorial, titled 'America's Lethal Politics,' referred to a January 2011 shooting where six people died and Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was seriously wounded, and said Palin's political action committee had before that shooting circulated a map that put 20 Democrats including Giffords under 'stylized cross hairs.'

It also contrasted the shootings, saying the Scalise attack had 'no sign of incitement as direct as in the Giffords attack.'
The Times later corrected the editorial, saying there was no link between 'political rhetoric' and the Giffords shooting, and Bennet has said he had not intended to blame Palin.
The newspaper published a series of corrections and wrote on social media: 'We're sorry about this and we appreciate that our readers called us on the mistake.' 
The official printed correction read: 'An editorial on Thursday about the shooting of Representative Steve Scalise incorrectly stated that a link existed between political rhetoric and the 2011 shooting of Representative Gabby Giffords. In fact, no such link was established.' 
Giffords was shot int he head outside a shopping center in Tucson on January 8, 2011. Six people, including a federal judge, were killed and 15 others were injured
Giffords was shot int he head outside a shopping center in Tucson on January 8, 2011. Six people, including a federal judge, were killed and 15 others were injured
But Rakoff said Bennet's having substantially rewritten an earlier draft, and admission he was aware 'incitement' could mean a call to violence, could suggest actual malice.
The judge also said evidence Bennet may have ignored materials inconsistent with his 'angle' for the editorial could suggest his reckless disregard for the truth.
Palin's lawyers, Shane Vogt and Ken Turkel, in an email said she appreciated Rakoff's 'careful consideration of the merits.'
In the summer of 2017, Rakoff dismissed the lawsuit, saying that while there were a few factual inaccuracies somewhat pertaining to Palin, they were rapidly corrected.
He said it may have been negligent but did not rise to the level of defamation of a public figure. 
But a federal appeals court last year restored the lawsuit.
The 2nd US Circuit Court of Appeals said Rakoff threw out the lawsuit too quickly without giving the onetime Republican vice presidential nominee a chance to obtain email records and other evidence that might prove her case.
Still, the decision by a three-judge panel said Palin's burden of proof was high to prove that the newspaper acted with actual malice. 
Federal judge says Sarah Palin can sue New York Times for defamation over newspaper editorial which linked her to 2011 shooting of Gabby Giffords Federal judge says Sarah Palin can sue New York Times for defamation over newspaper editorial which linked her to 2011 shooting of Gabby Giffords Reviewed by STATION GOSSIP on 02:27 Rating: 5

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