Why an election workers' lawsuit against a right-wing blog matters

Two Georgia women, who'd done nothing wrong, were terrorized, because of a conspiratorial pro-Trump lie. Now, they're filing a lawsuit.

Msnbc

12/4/2021 1:01:00 AM

.MaddowBlog: Two Georgia women, who'd done nothing wrong, were terrorized, because of a conspiratorial pro-Trump lie. Now, they're filing a lawsuit.

Two Georgia women, who'd done nothing wrong, were terrorized, because of a conspiratorial pro-Trump lie. Now, they're filing a lawsuit.

Freeman, a retiree who started a small boutique business selling fashion accessories,was forced to flee her house, close her business, and move to an undisclosed location on the advice of the FBI for her own safety. Her daughter dramatically changed her appearance so people wouldn't recognize her and started avoided going out in public.

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These women, who'd done nothing wrong, were terrorized, in part because of a ridiculous lie, and in part because Trump's followers helped expose them, putting them at risk.This week, as The Washington Postreported, the women filed a lawsuit.Two women who were Georgia election workers in 2020 are suing the far-right conspiracy website Gateway Pundit for defamation, alleging that the site and its owners knowingly published false stories about them that instigated a relentless campaign of harassment and threats.

According to their lawsuit, on Jan. 6, as Trump's followers launched an attack against the U.S. Capitol, other Trump followers surrounded Freeman's home, unaware that she'd already fled."Lies like those that The Gateway Pundit knowingly told about Ruby Freeman and Shaye Moss cannot be divorced from the devastation they leave behind — both for the targeted individuals and for our democracy itself," Brittany Williams, an attorney with the nonprofit Protect Democracy, which is representing the women, said in a statement. headtopics.com

For those unfamiliar with the website, the Post'sreportadded,"For years, Gateway Pundit has promoted a dizzying array of falsehoods, including the conspiracy theory that students who had survived the Parkland, Fla., school shooting were paid 'crisis actors'; the baseless claim that former president Barack Obama was not born in the United States; and stories incorrectly identifying the gunman in the 2017 Las Vegas concert mass shooting and the driver who killed a woman who was protesting a neo-Nazi march in Charlottesville."

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The New York Timesthat the right-wing website, which"published dozens of false stories" about Moss and Freeman, acknowledged the lawsuit yesterday and asked readers to send them money to help finance a legal defense.

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MaddowBlog How does Trump get away with everything? No different than Jan 6. He lied about her on tv and she was attacked. Anybody else would be in jail for that. Worst part is the FBI told her to move! MaddowBlog I hope they win. Bigly! MaddowBlog AWESOME!! Hit them where it hurts: Their wallet. MaddowBlog

MaddowBlog

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