Dominion Voting Systems is suing pro-Trump attorney Sidney Powell for making what attorneys called “wild” and “demonstrably false” allegations about its equipment in post-election lawsuits in Michigan and other battleground states.
In the 124-page complaint, filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, the company seeks $1.3 billion in damages, an amount Dominion attorney Tom Clare said could be a conservative figure.
"It is hard to imagine defamation on a broader scale than has been deeper and more damaging than this one,” Clare told reporters during a Friday conference call.
In the months after the Nov. 3 election, Powell spread rampant lies about the company’s voting equipment, including that it had ties to the late Venezuelan dictator Hugo Chavez, in a series of “Kraken lawsuits” that alleged global conspiracies to deny Trump a second term.
Powell blamed Dominion for flipping votes in Antrim County in northern Michigan, whose Republican clerk said human error led to a reporting mistake that initially gave more votes to Biden. The mistake was quickly corrected, and Trump ended up winning the county handily.
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A hand recount of paper ballots in Antrim County later in December confirmed the machines tabulated ballots accurately.
Powell’s suit also relied on so-called experts who confused counties in MIchigan with those in Minnesota to make their findings and reported improbable voting patterns in "Edison County, Michigan," which does not exist.
U.S. District Court Judge Linda V. Parker rejected Powell’s suit in Michigan, calling it an “amalgamation of theories, conjecture, and speculation.”
Trump repeated some of Powell’s discredited claims about Michigan in a speech to supporters just minutes before a mob stormed the U.S. Capitol in an attempt to prevent Congress from certifying Democrat Joe Biden as president-elect.
"Lives have been upended,” Dominion Voting Systems CEO John Poulos said during the Friday reporter call. “and the reputations of all of these families, and the poll workers and the election officials who have responsibly been using our election technology have all been affected by this.”
In a tweet Friday, Powell called the suit “baseless & filed to harass, intimidate, & to drain our resources as we seek the truth of #DominionVotingSystems’ role in this fraudulent election.”
“We will not be cowed in exercising our 1st Amendment rights or seeking truth,” she wrote.
The complaint follows a Wednesday suit filed by the City of Detroit, whose lawyers seek sanctions against Powell and Fink, including disbarment and financial penalties.
Michigan Attorney General Dana Nessel has said she intends to seek sanctions against attorneys like Powell who sought to overturn the election.
Powell could not be reached for comment on Friday. In a tweet this week, before the Capitol riots, she claimed the Electoral College vote certification was “based on the most egregious fraud in the history of this almost former Republic” and falsely blamed Antifa for the violence.
"The recent attacks on the democratic process are not singular or isolated events," Poulos said. "They're the result of a deliberate and malicious campaign of lies."
Conspiracy theories continue to circulate about Antrim County because of misinformation that Powell and others started and amplified, Poulos said.
Asked if Dominion will take legal action against others who spread conspiracy theories, including the president, Clare, the Dominion attorney, said they have "not ruled anyone out.”
"Today is just the first step to restore our good name and faith in elections by holding those responsible to account," Poulos said during the Friday call. "We intend to pursue justice vigorously.”
This article is made possible through Votebeat, a nonpartisan reporting project covering local election integrity and voting access. This article is available for reprint under the terms of Votebeat’s republishing policy.