Saturday, July 20

Fired Fox News reporter sues network, accusing it of retaliation

Fired Fox News reporter sues network, accusing it of retaliation

A former Fox News reporter has sued the conservative network, accusing it of discrimination and retaliation for firing him after he exposed “false coverage” of the 2020 US election and the January 6, 2021 Capitol riots, according to the court. deposits.

Jason Donner, who worked for Fox News as a reporter and producer for 12 years, claimed in the lawsuit that he was targeted after continually raising concerns to his superiors about the false statements allowed to him. ‘antenna. The suit was filed in the District of Columbia Superior Court in September. 27 and transferred Monday to the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia after a motion by Fox.

Mr. Donner had covered Capitol Hill for Fox News since 2018. He said in the complaint that while the channel tried to lure its audience of supporters of President Donal J. Trump by broadcasting a false narrative of election fraud during the 2020 presidential election, the work environment became toxic for journalists trying to “report honestly.”

According to the suit, Mr. Donner was working inside the Capitol on January 6 when insurrectionists burst through the doors. He was hiding with other journalists in newsstands when he heard that Fox was reporting that the attack was “peaceful,” he said. Mr. Donner called the Fox News control room, he said in the complaint, and told them that tear gas was going off, that rioters were storming the building and that shots had been fired. fired, and that false information on the news was “going to get us.” all killed.

Mr. Donner said he complained to his bosses about Fox News’ “lack of support” in the wake of the riot, including false statements and conspiracy theories from host Tucker Carlson at about that day, saying “it was demoralizing that Fox News allowed Carlson to gaslight the country with false information.”

Mr. Donner said he called in sick to work in September. On December 26, 2022, he was fired two days later, with Fox telling him he was “late for work and didn’t show up for work.”

Fox News did not immediately respond to a request for comment. Mr. Donner’s lawyers declined to comment. The lawsuit did not specify the amount of damages sought.

Fox is facing an avalanche of litigation over the false narratives it spread in its coverage of the 2020 election and the Capitol riot, including from shareholders and Ray Epps, a man it accuses of being an undercover government agent at the Capitol.

In April, Fox paid $787.5 million to settle a defamation suit filed by Dominion Voting Systems over false conspiracy theories it spread about election fraud. A trove of internal company communications released in the Dominion case showed that many Fox executives and hosts did not believe the election fraud claims but aired them anyway.

Smartmatic, another voting technology company, filed a similar defamation suit, seeking $2.7 billion in damages.

In June, Fox News settled for $12 million with a former producer, Abby Grossberg, in a hostile work environment lawsuit.