MINOT, N.D. — A few weeks ago, I had lunch with a politically engaged Republican friend who described Dominion Voting System’s defamation lawsuit against Fox News as an “act of civic hygiene.”
And it was. Fox News has been ground zero for spreading lies and distortion in this political era dominated by Donald Trump. What the lawsuit has revealed, with insider texts and emails, about how Fox News operates — with producers and reporters, prime-time hosts, and top executives all prioritizing truth below what their audience wants to hear — has been invaluable.
People like Tucker Carlson and Sean Hannity know they’ve been peddling lies, Dominion’s lawsuit has shown us. They don’t even like their audience all that much. But there was money to be made, so they lied and apparently made enough money with the lies to make the defamation case go away.
As we all learned yesterday, Fox is paying Dominion a settlement of $787.5 million to avoid a trial where people like Carlson, Hannity, and even Rupert Murdoch himself would have had to take the stand and testify under oath. It’s a big number, and we can’t blame Dominion for taking the deal, but Fox is getting the better end.