As many have noted, the judge, Natalia Combs Greene, has tossed out the National Review Online (NRO) and Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), petition to apply the anti-SLAPP law to Michael Mann's suit against them for libel. Eli has commented on the suite previously, others have done the job on the judge's denial, but Eli, Eli always has an eye for the amusing, and NRO's recent filing claiming that the judge blew it by confusing poor old innocent them with the evel CEI is a new record in kicking your friends under the bus.
Judge Greene was not pleased with CEI's and NRO's claims of innocence writing
There is sufficient evidence presented that is indicative of “actual malice.” The CEI Defendants have consistently accused Plaintiff of fraud and inaccurate theories, despite Plaintiff’s work having been investigated several times and found to be proper. The CEI Defendants’ persistence despite the EPA and other investigative bodies’ conclusion that Plaintiff’s work is accurate (or that there is no evidence of data manipulation) is equal to a blatant disregard for the falsity of their statements. Thus, given the evidence presented the Court finds that Plaintiff could prove “actual malice.with similar for NRO. This is a worse defeat for CEI and NRO than it appears on the surface which is bad enough, because their motions argue that their statements about Prof. Mann were opinion, not fact, which is going to make it tough for them to argue that they were telling the truth about him and askin for discovery to dig dirt, but wait, there is more.
In a new motion, NRO argues that well yes, CEI libeled Mann, but they didn't
Specifically, the Order conflates the conduct of co-defendant Competitive Enterprise Institute (“CEI”) with that of National Review and Steyn, who never petitioned the Environmental Protection Agency to investigate Plaintiff or otherwise pressured the agency concerning Plaintiff’s research. Similarly, National Review and Steyn did not criticize Plaintiff’s scientific research for years, as CEI didEli does not remember NRO and Mark Steyn being especially friendly to Mann, and indeed if not before, after this people are going to go looking in the archives, but this is a sharp message to CEI that they are on their own.
1. Michael Mann's complaint
2. CEI's motion to dismiss based on the DC anti-SLAPP act
3. NRO's motion to dismiss based on the DC anti-SLAPP act
4. Mann's reply to the NROs anti-SLAPP petition
5. CEI's response to Mann's reply
6. Judge's decision denying the CEI motion to dismiss
7. Judge's decision denying the NRO motion to dismiss
8. Judge's decision denying the NRO motion to dismiss based on the anti-SLAPP law
9. NRO's motion to reconsider
10. Mann's reply to the motion to reconsider
11. NRO's motion to reconsider gets tossed and their lawyers are dissed for being clueless about how to file motions UPDATED