Last Monday, Newsmax host John Tabacco read a statement live on air to walk back claims that the conservative news network had peddled in the past months about two vote-processing companies, Smartmatic and Dominion Voting Systems, and their potentially illegal influence in the 2020 election.
“Newsmax would like to clarify its news coverage and note that it has not reported as true certain claims made about these companies,” Tabacco said.
Newsmax had posted the same statement on its website this past Saturday, asserting that it had “no evidence” that “Dominion or Smartmatic used software or reprogrammed software that manipulated votes in the 2020 election.”
These clarifications come after Smartmatic, a technology company with a self-described mission of “building the most secure, accessible, and easy-to-use election technologies ever designed to safeguard the election process from start to finish” threatened to sue Fox News, Newsmax and One America News (OAN) for their intentional misinformation.
“Smartmatic announced today that it is issuing legal notices and retraction demand letters to Fox News, Newsmax, and One America News Network for publishing false and defamatory statements,” their recent press release began. “The demand letters identify dozens of factually inaccurate statements made by each of the organizations as part of a ‘disinformation campaign’ to injure Smartmatic and discredit the 2020 U.S. election.”
Smartmatic maintains that Fox News, Newsmax and OAN could have investigated their statements prior to airing them to millions of viewers or publishing them for their readers, but they neglected to at every turn.
“Multiple fact-checkers have consistently debunked these false statements with stunning consistency and regularity,” the press release continued. “Smartmatic had nothing to do with the ‘controversies’ that certain public and private figures have alleged regarding the 2020 U.S. election.”
CEO Antonio Mugica had similarly strong words for these news networks, claiming that they have “no evidence to support their attacks on Smartmatic” because “there is no evidence.”
“This campaign was designed to defame Smartmatic and undermine legitimately conducted elections,” Mugica said. “Our efforts are more than just about Smartmatic or any other company. This campaign is an attack on election systems and election workers in an effort to depress confidence in future elections and potentially counter the will of the voters, not just here, but in democracies around the world.”
Fox News hosts Maria Bartiromo, Jeanine Pirro and Lou Dobbs also responded to Smartmatic’s threats over the weekend, using interlocutors to issue clarifications to correct their own false claims about Smartmatic. These videos aired on both Fox News and Fox Business Channel.
Most recently, The New York Times reported that Dominion Voting Systems has also threatened to sue the Trump campaign and lawyer Sidney Powell, who has repeatedly spread lies about the 2020 election and both voting companies.