Palin Lawsuit Against New York Times Denied by Judge

Palin Lawsuit Against New York Times Denied by Judge
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin leaves a courthouse in New York on Feb. 14, 2022. (Seth Wenig/AP Photo)
Caden Pearson

A U.S. federal court judge has ruled against former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin’s bid for a new trial, saying she failed to show “even a speck” of evidence that The New York Times defamed her in 2017.

“The striking thing about the trial here was that Palin, for all her earlier assertions, could not in the end introduce even a speck of such evidence,” U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff wrote in his decision, reported Axios.

“A mistake is not enough to win if it was not motivated by actual malice,” he added.

Radkoff also said that Palin “still cannot identify any affirmative evidence to support the essential element of actual malice.”

“This absence is not a consequence of trial procedures, judicial bias, or adverse evidentiary rulings,” he added.

Palin sued The New York Times in 2017 after its editorial board published an editorial that incorrectly linked her to a 2011 mass shooting in Tuscon, Arizona, where six people died and then-Rep. Gabby Giffords (D-Ariz.) was seriously wounded.

Prior to the attack, Palin’s political action committee, SarahPAC, had circulated a map that superimposed the image of a crosshairs target over certain Democratic congressional districts, including the district of Giffords.

But no evidence ever emerged to prove such a link between the map and the shooting, while a criminal investigation of the shooter, Jared Loughner, revealed that he held animosity toward Giffords before the SarahPAC map was published.

In February, Palin sought to disqualify Radkoff, a Clinton nominee, as the judge in her trial, according to a court filing.

The New York Times published a new editorial titled “America’s Lethal Politics” after another political shooting occurred on June 14, 2017, when James Hodgkinson opened fire in Alexandria, Virginia, at a practice for a congressional baseball game. He seriously injured four people, including Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.).

The new editorial essentially argued that the two shootings were Palin’s fault.

Due to immediate backlash, within a day, the newspaper had changed the content and issued a correction. Twelve days after the editorial was published, Palin sued The New York Times in federal court. She alleged one count of defamation under New York law.

Palin was governor of Alaska from 2006 to 2009 and ran for vice president on the Republican ticket with then-Sen. John McCain in 2008. They lost to then-Democrat Sens. Barack Obama and Joe Biden.

The Epoch Times reached out to Palin for comment.

Zachary Stieber contributed to this report.