2020 Democratic presidential hopeful Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard filed a defamation suit against failed Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

Gabbard filed the lawsuit over comments Hillary made in October 2019 on the Campaign HQ With David Plouffe podcast:

She’s the favorite of the Russians. They have a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting her so far. And, that’s assuming Jill Stein will give it up, which she might not because she’s also a Russian asset. Yeah, she’s a Russian asset.

The lawsuit pointed out that Hillary doubled down on the remarks the following day. Her spokesman Nick Merrill simply replied, “If the nesting doll fits.” He also insisted Hillary’s remarks were not an “outlandish claim,” but “reality.

The lawsuit claimed Hillary’s remarks hurt Gabbard’s reputation:

Clinton’s Defamatory Statements immediately harmed Tulsi. Despite reprobation of Clinton by several 2020 presidential candidates including Senator Bernie Sanders, Marianne Williamson, and Andrew Yang for her baseless conspiracy-mongering, Clinton’s Defamatory Statements spread like wildfire across the Internet, and took on a life of their own. Millions of Americans heard (or read about) a well-known authority figure, Clinton, stating as fact that Tulsi was a “Russian asset” and “the favorite of the Russians.” Scientifically conducted opinion surveys have shown that Clinton’s false, malicious statements about Tulsi were accepted as true by millions of Americans, including large numbers of voters in battleground Presidential primary states

In short, Clinton got exactly what she wanted by lying about Tulsi—she harmed her political and personal rival’s reputation and ongoing Presidential campaign, and started a damaging whisper campaign based on baseless, but vicious, untruths.

Gabbard alleged that Hillary made the comments “with actual malice.” Hillary “knew that the Defamatory Statements were false” despite having the ability to receive information to prove her point.

Gabbard’s lawyer noted that “no United States law enforcement or intelligence agencies have claimed, much less presented any evidence, that Congresswoman Gabbard is a Russian asset.” Gabbard serves on the House Armed Services Committee, Foreign Affairs Committee, and Homeland Security Committee and no one has questioned her access to classified information.

Other demonstrations of malice include “improbability” of Gabbard serving as a Russian agent since she has sat in Congress for four-terms, a Major in the United States Army National Guard, and “voluntarily deployed to war zones twice to war zones in the Middle East.”

The lawsuit mentioned Hillary’s “ill will against Tulsi,” which stems from Gabbard choosing Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in 2016:

Clinton has not gotten over her loss in that election and still dwells on what happened. Clinton blames many persons for her loss. One of them is Senator Sanders, whom Clinton blames for being late to endorse her during her 2016 campaign. But Clinton reserves a special hatred and animosity for Tulsi—who never endorsed Clinton, did not campaign for her, and to top it off, gave the nomination speech for Senator Sanders at the 2016 Democratic National Convention.

In February 2016, Tulsi was the Vice Chair of the DNC. She publicly backed Senator Sanders (over Clinton) for President, and she was the highest profile Congressperson to do so at the time. Clinton was extremely angry—to put it mildly—that Tulsi endorsed Senator Sanders over her. Clinton’s agents emailed Tulsi to tell her that the Clinton team “no longer trust[s] [Tulsi’s] judgment,” and Tulsi was told that the Clinton team would never forget this slight. Among other things, Clinton’s agents relayed that the Clinton team will refuse to assist Tulsi in any of her campaigns. These agents then forwarded this correspondence to Huma Abedin (Clinton’s closest aide) and John Podesta (chairman of Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign) to gloat about the beatdown they felt they delivered on Tulsi, writing “Hammer dropped!” It has been widely reported by news sources that Clinton is known to keep long-time grudges, even going as far as maintaining “for-me and against-me databases” and scoring degrees of treachery for those that have crossed her.

This is not in the lawsuit, but honestly, it should be:

Tulsi-HRC 2020-01-22 by Legal Insurrection on Scribd

 

 
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