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Dan Bongino Loses $15M Defamation Lawsuit Against The Daily Beast

A federal judge shredded right-winger Dan Bongino’s lawsuit against The Daily Beast claiming he suffered $15 million worth of defamation from a report his NRATV show was canceled over downsizing.
Dan Bongino Loses $15M Defamation Lawsuit Against The Daily Beast
Dan Bongino Image from: Fox News

Bongino is a loud-mouthed Fox News contributor whose “unglued” behavior reportedly got him banned from the Fox News @ Night and other “news” shows on the network. Apparently, he’s just one fragile snowflake underneath that tough exterior.

Fox News, of course, was very sympathetic:

Bongino, a Fox News contributor, explained that a December 2018 report by Daily Beast reporter Lachlan Markay said he was “dropped” by NRATV, which is a “euphemism for being fired,” but the conservative pundit says the story was false.

“It’s not a crybaby snowflake thing, it’s my fight. We all have our own fights, but The Daily Beast, a while back, wrote a story about me,” Bongino explained. “They wrote a story about me that was patently false.”

“The author of the story texted me that he had heard from sources the opposite -- the opposite was the true story -- that I did not renew my contract," Bongino said. "I was offered to stay, I was not dropped. I did not return by choice, I left… that story was false."

"I gave them the opportunity multiple times, asked them on Twitter to correct it -- they refused," he added. "I gave them an opportunity via text recently to correct it. They refused.

That’s right the “not a crybaby, snowflake thing” is the $15 M indignity of this article - which notes that Bongino failed to respond to numerous inquiries:

Bongino initially did not respond to numerous inquiries, but after publication he tweeted that news of his show’s demise was “fake news,” and promised to elaborate on his podcast.

He subsequently confirmed that [Bongino's show] is, in fact, ending, but suggested that the decision not to renew the show was his, not the network’s—a characterization questioned by one source familiar with the organization’s decision.

A day later, NRATV released a statement saying the network “made every attempt to retain [Bongino] in 2019,” but did not elaborate on the negotiations.

In an 18-page decision, federal judge Jose E. Martinez, a George W. Bush appointee, all but called Bongino's suit BS. From Law & Crime:

The judge immediately noted that Daily Beast reporter Lachlan Markay did what he could to ascertain the truth, but that Bongino didn’t answer the questions put to him by Markay — possibly or perhaps even likely resulting in Bongino’s own peril:

Upon learning that Bongino’s show would no longer air, Defendant’s reporter texted him and asked, “Heard you didn’t renew with NRA TV?” Bongino did not respond. Four days later, the reporter texted again, “Just circling back on this. Probably publishing something today.” Still, no response. Defendant then published an article titled, “Dan Bongino out at NRATV—BONGI-NO-MORE.” The article’s subheading reads, “Trump loves the guy. But the gun rights group is downsizing its media operation and his show appears to be a casualty of those plans.” The first sentence continues, “The National Rifle Association’s media arm has dropped pro-Trump firebrand Dan Bongino . . . .” The article also notes that neither Bongino nor the NRA responded to Defendant’s requests for comments at first.

After publication, however, Bongino and NRATV responded to the article publicly. The next day, Defendant revised the article to include their reactions. The article now reads, “[Bongino] suggested that the decision not to renew the show was his, not the network’s” and “NRATV released a statement saying the network ‘made every attempt to retain [Bongino] in 2019’ but did not elaborate on the negotiations.”

On top of all that, the judge ruled the article is not defamatory and prospectively granted The Daily Beast’s request for costs and fees (subject to the possibility Bongino refiles his case by August 20 in “good faith” and “based on other facts not apparent” in the original lawsuit.)

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