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Gateway Pundit Goes on Offensive After Being Sued Over Fulton County GA 2020 Election Reporting

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The Gateway Pundit is countersuing groups that have targeted the news outlet for its reporting concerning two 2020 Fulton County, Georgia election workers.

Yale University’s Media Freedom & Information Access Clinic (MFIA) and United To Protect Democracy filed its complaint against Gateway Pundit’s parent company TGP Communications LLC, as well as its owner James Hoft and his brother and Gateway writer Joseph Hoft in December 2021.

The defamation suit alleges that The Gateway Pundit falsely reported that Fulton County election workers Ruby Freeman and Wandrea “Shaye” Moss engaged in wrongdoing on election night 2020 after reporters and poll watchers were told counting had ended for the night. However, it recommenced a short time later.

“[S]ecurity footage from Georgia’s State Farm Arena showed dozens of ballot counters, media, and Republican observers leaving en masse at the same time from the ballot-counting area for Fulton County,” according to The Federalist’s Mollie Hemingway.

“After they left, a small remnant of about four workers began pulling trunks containing thousands of ballots from underneath a table with a long tablecloth and running them through machines.”

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Freeman and Moss were two of the workers in the video.

Georgia Republican Party chairman David Shafer tweeted the day after the election this was the report he received.

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“Fulton County told our observers last night to go home because they were closing up and then continued to count ballots in secret,” he wrote.

Jackie Pick — a Trump campaign attorney observing counting at State Farm Arena —  told WXIA-TV in December 2020 that at “about 10, there was one person working the polls who told everyone in the room to leave.”

But the Georgia Secretary of State’s office investigated the matter and concluded the video in question just showed “normal ballot processing,” according to WXIA.

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Why people were told counting was over for the night has never been adequately answered.

An independent review commissioned by Georgia’s State Election Board on Fulton County’s conduct of the election, concluded in a January 2021 report, “the truth about what happened on the night of November 3rd between 10:30 PM and 11:52 PM [at State Farm Arena] continues to be elusive … but if the party poll watchers are correct, then there is a serious problem.”

Fulton County registration chief Ralph Jones, who was present at State Farm Arena that night, resigned in August 2021 after coming under intense criticism for the county’s handling of the 2020 election.

“There were persistent chain of custody issues throughout the entire absentee ballot processing system,” the January 2021 report said.

It added that “the fact that ballots were delivered to State Farm Arena in unsecured mail carts is very concerning.”

“Protocol for securing ballots exists not only in securing the ballots themselves but also ensuring no ballot stuffing occurred,” it said.

“The problem was exacerbated by poor managerial processes by Ralph Jones, who failed to do intake counts for provisional ballots.”

The previous month Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger had called for his firing along with Fulton County elections director Rick Barron. Barron resigned in November 2021.

So there were plenty of problems with the election in Fulton County in 2020.

The lawsuit brought by MFIA and Protect Democracy alleges The Gateway Pundit intentionally disseminated falsehoods about election workers Freeman and Moss, thereby defaming them.

The suit claims Freeman and Moss have continued to face emotional and economic damage due to Gateway’s reporting, though it would seem tough to close that loop that one outlet’s reporting alone caused the anger directed at the plaintiffs.

One Gateway headline, the suit points to as false read, “Huge! Video Footage from Georgia Shows Suitcases Filled with Ballots Pulled from Under Table AFTER Supervisor Told Poll Workers to Leave Tabulation Center.”

A fact check determined the “suitcases” were ballot containers used by the county, but they were pulled from under a table after the observers were asked to leave because counting had ended for the night.

James Hoft took it a step further tweeting that the footage showed alleged fraudulent ballots and those involved in counting them were “dirty crooks.” He could not prove that.

What is known is the events that took place at State Farm Arena were out of the ordinary and caused concerns and doubts among many.

A Gateway headline mirrored similar language to Hoft’s tweet saying a “Crooked Operative Filmed Pulling Out Suitcases of Ballots in Georgia” and naming Ruby Freeman. A later article named Moss.

That went too far. Authorities have not found cheating occurred in Fulton County, but have concluded procedures were not followed that help ensure the integrity of the election.

In other words, the steps that should be taken to give confidence cheating did not occur were not all followed.

Gateway Pundit’s attorney Rob Roberts sees Project Democracy’s and MFIA’s suit as targeted at them because the outlet is conservative.

“Protect Democracy, a neo-globalist group which pushed the Russia, Russia, Russia hoax, protected the Biden Crime Family’s gas interests in Ukraine,” Roberts said in a statement to The Western Journal.

“Protect Democracy also represents plaintiffs in another election ‘disinformation‘ suit against James O’Keefe and Project Veritas, filed a few months prior to the suit against Gateway Pundit starting in 2021,” Roberts added.

He further noted that MFIA is funded in part by liberal Craig’s List founder Craig Newmark, who funds multiple organizations aimed at fighting “disinformation.”

Among the organizations Newmark has backed through his foundation include the liberal ProPublica and the leftist Mother Jones magazine.

There is much to find fault with in how Fulton County conducted the 2020 election.

Gateway will get the chance to prove in court if it was wrongly targeted for being a conservative outlet or being held to account for its reporting about Freeman and Moss.

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 3,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Birthplace
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Nationality
American
Honors/Awards
Graduated dean's list from West Point
Education
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Location
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
English
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith




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