A Judge recently ruled that Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer’s bogus defamation lawsuit against Kari Lake for criticizing him for his role in the stolen midterm election in Arizona will proceed to trial.
Richer seeks nominal damages, punitive damages, attorneys fees, cost of suit, and retraction of “false and defamatory statements.”
Even far-left Arizona State University’s Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law First Amendment Clinic knows this is an attack on Kari Lake’s rights as a citizen and a candidate, and they have joined Lake’s defense.
As The Gateway Pundit previously reported, the lawsuit by Stephen Richer is backed by Protect Democracy, the same far-left Soros-tied nonprofit behind Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss’ $148 million defamation lawsuit against Rudy Giuliani after he claimed the two women contributed to voter fraud in Georgia’s 2020 election. Protect Democracy also worked tirelessly and petitioned the DOJ to shut down the Arizona 2020 election audit.
Protect Democracy is also funding the two women in their lawsuit against The Gateway Pundit, Jim Hoft, and Joe Hoft.
The leftist group wants to bankrupt and destroy anybody who questions elections in America.
Protect Democracy attorneys claim that Kari Lake used her social media platforms, interviews, and public speeches to defame Stephen Richer–an elected official–by criticizing Maricopa County’s handling of the 2022 election and implicating him in election irregularities, including machine and printer failures on election day and early ballots with no chain of custody.
Richer, who oversaw early voting, also founded and operated the Pro-Democracy Republicans PAC, a dark money PAC aimed at eliminating candidates with a MAGA agenda. Any honest person who saw the evidence of Kari Lake’s stolen election would reasonably believe that he and his colleagues intentionally rigged the election.
This is dangerous for free speech and our rights as Americans to criticize the government.
The Judge in this case, Jay Aldeman, cited the sham rulings against Lake in her election contest lawsuit, which is still undergoing appeals, to discard Lake’s claims of election fraud as “provably false.”
The Gateway Pundit has reported extensively on Kari Lake’s fight against the stolen midterm election in Arizona. The election day anomalies and discrepancies included likely intentional machine failures at 60% of Maricopa County polling locations, misread votes, and hundreds of thousands of illegal mail-in ballots with no chain of custody or signature verification.
These findings were presented by Lake’s attorneys in the Maricopa County Superior Court in December 2021 and May 2022. However, they were ignored, and the lawsuit was dismissed by feckless Judge Peter A. Thompson.
Rachel Alexander for the AZ Sun-Times reports,
Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Jay Adleman, who heard oral arguments on Lake’s Motion to Dismiss on December 19, issued his ruling denying the motion that same day. He indicated he already found Lake guilty without putting on a trial first. “In the Court’s view, Defendant Lake’s statements are ‘provably false’ under prevailing Arizona law,” he said.
Adleman noted that it is a high bar to obtain a dismissal. He said, “Dismissal is permitted only when a ‘plaintiff would not be entitled to relief under any interpretation of the facts susceptible of proof,’” and “a motion to dismiss requires the trial court to accept all material facts alleged by the nonmoving party as true.”
He said Richer offered two “well pled factual allegations” to support his lawsuit. First, he cited Richer’s assertion that the recorder’s office is not responsible for Election Day operations. However, although the Maricopa County Supervisors are statutorily obligated to oversee Election Day operations, the recorder is statutorily obligated to oversee mail-in ballots, which includes the 300,000 ballots Lake referred to. Additionally, Richer testified in court during Lake’s election contest trials regarding Election Day proceedings. For example, he said when ballots leave the voting centers in the bins, they are not counted so no one knows how many there are.
Second, Adleman said “the independent report overseen by former Chief Justice Ruth McGregor did not find any evidence of intentional misconduct involving Election Day ballots.” That report was inconclusive about the cause of the printer issues on Election Day. Jennifer Wright, who was the Election Integrity Unit civil attorney for the Arizona Attorney General’s Office during the election and who performed her own investigation of Maricopa County’s election problems going back to the 2020 presidential election, told The Arizona Sun Times the report was “meaningless” since it did not include an analysis of the printer logs.
As Alexander notes, Richer’s lawsuit, if successful, would likely be overturned on appeal. The Arizona Supreme Court last year found Arizona State Senator Wendy Rogers not guilty of defamation after a private citizen sued her for attacking her political opponent and his modeling agency, which she said “specializes in underage girls and advertises on websites linked to sex trafficking.”
“[T]he First Amendment necessarily protects both the profound and the profane, not only conscientious candidates and civil discourse but unscrupulous politicians and negative campaigns as well,” said Justice Clint Bolick in the Majority Opinion that Rogers was innocent.
Judge Adleman ordered both parties to meet and provide an Amended Scheduling Order by January 19, 2024 in Richer v. Lake.
The Gateway Pundit will provide updates on the upcoming trial.