Report: Tulsi Gabbard Drops Her Defamation Lawsuit Against Hillary Clinton

Screengrab / CNN / Youtube

Sarah Shaiman

Legal experts alleged the lawsuit had little chance of material success.

Former presidential candidate Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-HI) dropped her defamation lawsuit against Hillary Clinton, according to court filings obtained by CNN

  • The suit alleged Clinton defamed Gabbard by “[lying] about her ties to Russia” in a 2019 interview where Clinton claimed Gabbard was a Russian asset and being groomed as a third-party candidate to spoil the 2020 election for Republicans. 
  • The lawsuit claimed Gabbard suffered at least $50 million in damages from Clinton’s comments.
  • Additionally, the lawsuit alleged the comments hurt American voters and American democracy by peddling false claims about the candidate. 
  • The lawsuit intended to bring attention and support to Gabbard’s campaign but failed as Gabbard maintained negligible polling numbers throughout the 2020 primary season.
  • Legal experts have claimed the lawsuit “stood very little chance of success,” because the burden of proof is so high in defamation lawsuits. Gabbard’s team would have needed to prove Clinton’s comments were made “with knowledge of reckless disregard of whether it was false or not.”

Gabbard’s legal team did not respond to CNN’s request for comment nor did a spokesperson for the congresswoman. Clinton’s spokesperson Nick Merrill said in a statement, “This was a publicity stunt through and through, and this filing makes that clear.” He added “good riddance” in Russian. 

The congresswoman has since dropped out of the race and endorsed presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden. Gabbard said, “I know Vice President Biden and his wife and am grateful to have called his son Beau, who also served in the National Guard, a friend. Although I may not agree with the Vice President on every issue, I know that he has a good heart and is motivated by his love for our country and the American people.”

Read the full report here.

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