The voting system company Smartmatic is demanding that three conservative news outlets retract the “false and defamatory statements” allegedly made against them.
The Florida-based technology firm issued legal notices and letters demanding retractions to Fox News, Newsmax and One America News Network on Monday, The Hill reported. Allegations about the 2020 presidential race being fraught with irregularities and fraud have also repeatedly taken aim at the Smartmatic company and Dominion Voting Systems in the last few weeks as President Donald Trump continues to challenge the results of the election.
“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,” Smartmatic CEO Antonio Mugica said in a statement.
“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,” he added.
Smartmatic accused Fox News Network of a “disinformation campaign” in its letter.
“Fox News has engaged in a concerted disinformation campaign against Smartmatic,” the letter, obtained by Mediaite, stated.
“Fox News told its millions of viewers and readers that Smartmatic was founded by Hugo Chávez, that its software was designed to fix elections, and that Smartmatic conspired with others to defraud the American people and fix the 2020 U.S. election by changing, inflating, and deleting votes,” the letter continued, referring to accusations made by Trump lawyers such as Rudy Giuliani.
“While Fox News holds itself out as a trusted news source, it has continually and repeatedly published demonstrably false information and defamatory statements about Smartmatic. Fox News used its anchors and on-air guests, including Rudy Giuliani and Sidney Powell, to spread lies about a company that had absolutely nothing to do with the voting that took place in areas at the heart of the ‘conspiracies’ discussed following the 2020 U.S. election,” the company said.
Mugica told Reuters that the attacks on Smartmatic have damaged the company’s reputation.
“I don’t think there is one customer in the world that has not come back to us to tell us either that this is a problem and this could endanger our future relationship – for existing customers – or that this could endanger a potential new contract,” he said.
The company claimed in its letter to Fox News that the losses it is facing are in “the hundreds of millions, if not billions, of dollars” and has given the network until Tuesday, December 15 to respond with a retraction, warning that it has “retained legal counsel that has brought some of the largest defamation matters in U.S. history.”
Meanwhile, Newsmax defended its on-air reports, noting that it has been guests on the platform who have made the claims.
“Newsmax itself has never made a claim of impropriety about Smartmatic, its ownership or software,” the outlet said in a statement to The Hill.
“Individuals, including plaintiff’s attorneys, Congressmen and others, have appeared on Newsmax raising questions about the company and its voting software, citing legal documents or previously published reports about Smartmatic,” it added.
“As any major media outlet, we provide a forum for public concerns and discussion,” Newsmax stated. “In the past, we have welcomed Smartmatic and its representatives to counter such claims they believe to be inaccurate and will continue to do so.”
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