Alan Dershowitz weighs in on Covington libel lawsuit, calls it ‘reasonable’

Alan Dershowitz was asked his thoughts on the libel case being brought against the Washington Post by the Covington Catholic student Nick Sandmann, and he feels the case is very reasonable:

THE HILL – Attorney Alan Dershowitz on Wednesday told Hill.TV’s “Rising” that he believes that Covington Catholic High School student Nick Sandmann has a “reasonable case” in his lawsuit against The Washington Post over its coverage of a confrontation between Sandmann and a Native American elder in Washington, D.C.

“I think they have a reasonable case, I mean the world was guilty of libel,” Dershowitz, a Harvard Law professor and contributor at The Hill, told hosts Krystal Ball and Buck Sexton of the case.

“These poor kids seemed to be doing exactly the right thing, and then suddenly because they are thought to be white, privileged kids, suddenly everyone’s ganging up on them,” he continued.

When someone like Dershowitz says they have a ‘reasonable case’, I think that really means they have a great shot at winning.



But Dershowitz does think they are asking for an unserious amount of money.

Despite that, he says they have a ‘significant’ case against Washington Post:

“I’d be interested to see how the case unfolds, I mean they’re asking for a lot of money, I don’t think that’s going to be taken too seriously,” he said. “But I do think that they have a significant case and it will be interesting to see how The Post defends against their reporting in the case.”

“It’s important to air this issue out in the public, and one of the functions that a suit like this has is to lay it all out in the public,” he continued. “The media has to be responsible for their reporting particularly when you have kids who have no ability generally to defend themselves against media reporting.”

Dershowitz added at the end of the interview that it’s important to remember that Sandmann is not a public figure like the president of the United States. He’s a private person who had all of this thrust upon him and subsequently his “reputation has been diminished in the eyes of some”.

He is right to point out that so many were guilty of libel, not just the Washington Post. And their lawsuits are coming soon!

Comment Policy: Please read our comment policy before making a comment. In short, please be respectful of others and do not engage in personal attacks. Otherwise we will revoke your comment privileges.
newest oldest most voted
stephmcg✓Fᵉᵈᵉʳᵃˡ ᶦˢᵗ
Guest
stephmcg✓Fᵉᵈᵉʳᵃˡ ᶦˢᵗ

I disagree with Dershowitz on the amount because a few million is really not a major penalty for the Post and it will not financially harm them, in the way they set out to destroy the boy’s life. To me their punishment should match the intent they had when they attacked the Covington kids. Yes 250 million is a lot of money and that penalty to me would match their intent of destroying the young kid’s life.

Ken
Guest
Ken

250 million is a symbolic number because that is what Bezos paid for the propaganda rag, but any number awarded that doesn’t include at least 8 figures would be unjust. And this is just the first of dozens of cases that should be filed.

by the time the suits are finished they should be well over 9 figures. And don’t settle anything that doesn’t require a very public apology and admission of guilt

ty tailor
Guest
ty tailor

If I were on the jury, I’d give him much more than he’s asking for. It is heinous what they tried (and partially succeeded) to do to this kid especially when you consider that they knew the truth early on, both about the Phillips confrontation and the Black Hebrew hate group racial slurs.

kelly
Guest
kelly

“A reasonable case” sounds not likely to be successful. I’d be more convinced by “a strong case” or “I’d take that case.”

crc2011
Guest
crc2011

Jeff Bozo Bezos has deep pockets, go for the gusto kid.

David Jenson
Guest
David Jenson

That poor kid is gonna have to change his name after he leaves high school.

Tim from Montana
Guest
Tim from Montana

Their masks are off.

SheerPolitics
Guest
SheerPolitics

Dershowitz added at the end of the interview that it’s important to remember that Sandmann is not a public figure like the president of the United States.

And that’s key. Not only is he a private figure, but he’s a MINOR.

NewWest 123
Guest
NewWest 123

The attorneys take a chunk (big chunk) the IRS takes a chunk. Besides, it is the only way to settle issues…Monetarily is all anyone can do…The compost and others deserve getting hit hard. I’m sure Nicks parents are doing okay but this is about principle.

DDP(WWE HOF 2017)
Guest
DDP(WWE HOF 2017)

BREAKING: Attorney General William Barr is preparing to announce as early as next week the completion of Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, with plans for Barr to submit to Congress soon after a summary of Mueller’s confidential report.

Abe Lincoln
Guest
Abe Lincoln

Note that out of the $250 million, $200 million of which is for punitive damages. So it’s not all compensatory. Frankly, I think the punitive damages should be more since WaPo has deep pockets being owned by Bezos. I would have hoped for several billion in punitive damages just to discourage them and others from doing this again.

Morrie’s Wigs
Guest
Morrie’s Wigs

Bankrupt them all boys!! Only way they will learn. Rooting hard

THE_Bearstronaut
Guest
THE_Bearstronaut

I agree. The lawsuit may be reasonable but asking for $250 million in damages is ridiculous.

56Survivor
Guest
56Survivor

“WAR!”–Andrew Breitbart

sjmom
Guest
sjmom

The kids should ask for maximum damages. The way to hurt those in the world is to hit their wallet.

AT
Guest
AT

I mean the world was guilty of libel

Can “the world” be a named defendant?

nc ✓s & balances
Guest
nc ✓s & balances

There is nothing wrong with asking for an exorbitant amount of money – the whole point is it’s supposed to hurt so as to act as punishment and a deterrent to WaPo and others that what they did is unacceptable and will no longer be tolerated. Besides, it’s a negotiating point anyway, not a final offer. But I hope whatever the final number is, it’s a big one.

It doesn’t matter that it is “too much money” for this kid. That’s the same kind of thinking that was behind Hillary’s famous quote about Paula Jones: “If you drag a hundred-dollar bill through a trailer park, you never know what you’ll find.”

Sentinel
Guest
Sentinel

Again, I hope he wins. It might help to deter future monsters from taking pot shots at the innocent.

CC
Guest
CC

Not only would bankrupting the Post be justice, it would be a public service.

DesireeOdey
Guest
DesireeOdey

hugh halfwit needs to read this.

Rx No
Guest
Rx No

I’m a fan of The Dersch but I don’t think that the amount is unreasonable because if Hulk Hogan can get a $140m judgement from gawker who disgracefully invaded his privacy but reported accurately about the sextape then $250m from The WaPo for savagely lying about this child and actively attempting to ruin his life for the crime of a a pro life Christian Trump supporter seems pretty reasonable.

E. Lee Zimmerman
Guest
E. Lee Zimmerman

??? An “unserious” amount of money? Seriously? Good grief. Dershowitz really needs to pick a side and stay there.

Rocket Matt
Guest
Rocket Matt

I respect Alan Dershowitz, even though we are on opposite sides of the political spectrum on a lot of topics. He has a keen legal mind.
I bet that the post tries to settle this case before it goes to court. I’d like to see Sandmann’s lawyers take it to a jury. I bet any reasonable jury would side with the kid and depending on who is on the jury they could get most of what they asked for….at least far more than the WP would pay to settle.

JudyPaulette
Guest
JudyPaulette

And from what I read yesterday they are suing for the exact amount that Bezos paid for WAPO.

Back to Top of Comments