by Sharon Rondeau

(Jul. 27, 2022) — On Thursday, July 21, 2022, attorneys for 45th President of the United States Donald J. Trump sent a 282-page letter with copious documentation to CNN warning of impending legal action if the cable news network does not issue full and prominent retractions of its allegedly “false statements” as well as a public apology for its actions dating back to the 2016 election cycle.

The “Notice of Intent to Bring Civil Action for Defamation” sent by Ifrah Law is addressed to Chris Licht, CNN’s new CEO, and David Vigilante, the company’s executive vice president and general counsel and presents the view that CNN treated Trump differently in its news coverage by characterizing his claims of 2020 election fraud as “the Big Lie” while airing similar fraud claims from former Georgia gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams without such commentary.

The CNN documentation is grouped into 34 Exhibits, the last of which consists of show transcripts.

Notably, on page 4, Ifrah Law states:

On June 15, 2022, CNN’s new Chairman and CEO Chris Licht reportedly held a
conference call with top CNN producers in which he expressed displeasure with the use of
“Big Lie.” Id. Since then, CNN’s on-air personalities—including John King, Jake Tapper,
John Avlon, Brianna Keilar, Don Lemon, and Jeffrey Toobin, among others—have
continued to use the phrase in describing President Trump’s subjective state of mind
despite an apparent admonition from their Chief Executive Officer. Id.

On page 6, the attorneys contend that “Questions about election integrity are not baseless” referring to a database maintained by The Heritage Foundation of voter-fraud prosecutions and convictions gleaned from press releases issued by prosecutors’ offices around the country.

“Just using 2021-22, the Heritage Foundation has documented voting fraud convictions in Arizona, California, Florida, Michigan, New Hampshire, Texas, Colorado, Kansas, Mississippi, Nevada, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia. This does not include pending cases, but simply cases in which criminal convictions have resulted from the prosecution. The Heritage Foundation’s Election Fraud Database contains 1,365 proven instances of election fraud, 1,173 criminal convictions, and 48 civil penalties. Id.

The document then refers to the Texas Republican Party’s resolution issued last month stating:

We believe that the 2020 election violated Article 1 and 2 of the US Constitution, that various secretaries of state illegally circumvented their state legislatures in conducting their elections in multiple ways, including by allowing ballots to be received after November 3, 2020. We believe that substantial election fraud in key metropolitan areas significantly affected the results in five key states in favor of Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. We reject the certified results of the 2020 Presidential election, and we hold that acting President Joseph Robinette Biden Jr. was not legitimately elected by the people of the United States. We strongly urge all Republicans to work to ensure election integrity and to show up to vote
in November of 2022, bring your friends and family, volunteer for your local Republicans, and overwhelm any possible fraud.19

At the bottom of page 7, Ifram lawyers cite the work of True the Vote, which reported in the film, “2000 Mules” that cellphone “ping” data it legally acquired from a retailer from the 2020 general election demonstrated activity of “mules” in key “swing” states depositing multiple ballots in outside drop boxes, thereby evidencing fraud.

The communication provides ten days “from the date of service” for CNN to issue the retractions and apology Trump seeks.

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  1. “The Heritage Foundation’s Election Fraud Database contains 1,365 proven instances of election fraud, 1,173 criminal convictions, and 48 civil penalties.”

    These numbers are for about 20 years worth of elections.

    For 2022 they list 22 cases and for 2021 they list 21 cases.