Newsmax Wants to Force a Trump Pal to Testify in Its Dominion Mess

Sean Zanni/Getty
Sean Zanni/Getty

MAGA cable network Newsmax is attempting to force longtime Trump friend and billionaire grocery store magnate John Catsimatidis to testify in Dominion Voting System’s defamation lawsuit alleging the right-wing channel knowingly peddled election lies.

The cable outlet also names Catsimatidis’ media companies, Red Apple Media and WABC Radio, in its petition to enforce a subpoena.

According to the petition, obtained by The Daily Beast and filed Monday in the Supreme Court of New York County, Newsmax is seeking to depose Catsimatidis to ascertain why he and his radio station have not been named in Dominion’s defamation lawsuits about the 2020 presidential election.

“Dominion has sued neither Mr. Catsimatidis nor any of his media companies notwithstanding that they broadcast essentially the same news stories, statements and content at issue in Dominion’s lawsuits against Newsmax, One America News Network, and Fox News,” the petition states.

“Notably, Mr. Catsimatidis and his media company, WABC radio, broadcast essentially the same news stories at issue in the Newsmax and Fox News litigations. For example, WABC broadcast numerous statements by Rudy Giuliani concerning Dominion and allegations of voter fraud,” the cable network’s petition continues.

Newsmax Is Trying to Drag a Famous Priest Into Its Dominion Mess

Newsmax also notes that Dominion has sued former Trump campaign attorney Sidney Powell for baselessly accusing the voting software firm of flipping millions of votes from Donald Trump to President Joe Biden. According to the petition, Dominion cites statements Powell made on Catismatidis’ syndicated radio show, The CATS Roundtable, in its lawsuit against Powell.

The network further alleges that Dominion purportedly requested in February 2021 that social media companies preserve posts made by Catsimatidis prior to the firm filing any of its threatened defamation complaints.

Additionally, Newsmax appears to suggest that Dominion’s chief executive John Poulos may have taken mercy on Catsimatidis because of his close relationship with famed Greek Orthodox priest Father Alexander Karloutsos. “After Dominion settled its defamation lawsuit against Fox News, a National Herald article... reported that Dominion CEO John Poulos had stated that, in late 2020, he had conferred with Mr. Catsimatidis’ mentor, Father Alexander Karloutsos, concerning allegations of voter fraud and Dominion.”

The document adds that “public statements indicate connections and/or communications among Dominion CEO Mr. Poulos, Mr. Catsimatidis’ mentor, Father Karloutsos, and Mr. Catsimatidis.”

Late last year, The Daily Beast reported that Karloutsos was fighting a subpoena from the MAGA network, which demanded to see any texts of his related to Dominion. Lawyers for the priest accused Newsmax of harassing their client and engaging in an improper “fishing expedition.”

Lawyers for Catsimatidis, who has been warmly greeted on Newsmax airwaves in the past, objected to Newsmax’s initial subpoenas in November of last year. “Mr. Catsimatidis objects to the Subpoena to the extent it is vague, indefinite, uncertain, imprecise, ambiguous, and susceptible to multiple interpretations,” the objection noted.

Reps for Newsmax and Catsimatidis did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Delaware Superior Court Judge Eric Davis, who presided over Dominion’s defamation case against Fox News that resulted in a whopping $787.5 million settlement, initially scheduled the trial in the Newsmax case for September of this year.

However, the case was delayed, leading to the trial being pushed out. In its place, Davis has instead scheduled the trial for a separate defamation lawsuit filed against Newsmax by Smartmatic. Smartmatic is also accusing the network of promoting Trump-fueled lies after the 2020 election to boost its ratings.

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