New York Times Editor Takes Stand in Sarah Palin Defamation Case

Sarah Palin; James Bennet (inset) (Noel Vasquez/Getty Images; J. Countess/Getty Images)
Sarah Palin; James Bennet (inset) (Noel Vasquez/Getty Images; J. Countess/Getty Images)

Editorial page editor James Bennet testified on Wednesday as the judge weighs the newspaper’s motion to dismiss.

New York Times editorial page editor James Bennet testified Wednesday in an open hearing that he did not mean to imply a “causal link” between a political action committee tied to former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin and a 2011 attack on a then-congresswoman and others.

Palin, who served as John McCain’s running mate in the 2008 presidential election, sued the Timeson June 27 over a June 14 editorial that, before it was corrected, said that “the link to political incitement was clear” between a graphic produced by Palin’s PAC and the murderous rampage of Jared Loughner. In Palin’s suit, it was argued that the Times defamed her by suggesting that Loughner acted against then-Rep. Gabrielle Giffords because a “stylized target” was placed over her district by the PAC as one to target for electoral gain.

Wednesday’s hearing was held for a judge to gather more information about the context and motives of the individuals involved in the case. The Times has moved to dismiss the case, and the judge reiterated that he plans to make a decision on that motion by the end of the month.

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SOURCE: Jeremy Barr
The Hollywood Reporter