Last week there was lots of jubilation in the Mann-world PR headquarters because a judge had ruled that his defamation lawsuit could proceed. Except, there’s this inconvenient glitch. It seems that the judge got the actions of the two defendants mixed up in the ruling, kinda like that upside down Tiljander proxy thing.
From Andrew Lawtons “Landmark Report“:
Dazed and Confused: Steyn files motion for reconsideration on Mann lawsuit based on Clinton judge’s error in fact
Below are the public court documents submitted by Mark Steyn’s attorney moving for reconsideration by Clinton-appointed D.C. Judge Natalia M. Combs Greene as a result of her decision to allow the lawsuit by climate scientist Michael Mann against Mark Steyn and National Review to proceed.
Interestingly, it appears that Judge Combs Greene has mixed-up the defendants in the court’s ruling, attributing actions taken by the Consumer Enterprise Institution [sic] to Mark Steyn and National Review.
Mann v. National Review – Reconsideration Motion (fr0m Scribd)
Defendants National Review, Inc. (“National Review”) and Mark Steyn respectfully request that the Court reconsider its July 19, 2013 Order denying their prior motions to dismiss(the “Order”). A proposed order is attached.First, and as set forth in the accompanying Memorandum of Points and Authorities, theOrder appears to be based in part on material mistakes of fact. 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 Steyndid not criticize Plaintiff’s scientific research for years, as CEI did. Nevertheless, the Order relies on these points to bolster its conclusion that National Review’s brief criticism of Plaintiff’s research was defamatory speech, not protected rhetorical hyperbole. See Order, at 17. (“On the other hand, when one takes into account all of the statements and accusations made over the years, the constant requests for investigations of Plaintiff’s work, the alleged defamatory statements appear less akin to ‘rhetorical hyperbole’ and more as factual assertions.”). In addition, the Order relies on these erroneous facts in concluding Plaintiff met his burden under the Anti-SLAPP Act of demonstrating that National Review published the statements at issue with actual malice. Indeed, the Order asserts that several investigations of Plaintiff’s work were prompted by allegations leveled by National Review and Steyn. See Order, at 21 (“It follows that if anyone should be aware of the accuracy (or findings that the work of Plaintiff is sound), it would be the NR Defendants.”). Yet there are no facts –in the record or otherwise –that suggest National Review and Steyn ever called for or prompted any investigation of Plaintiff’s research. Consequently, the Order should be reconsidered in light of the apparent confusion of facts pertaining to each set of Defendants.
Given that sort of quality judicial work, I suppose it is no surprise that Judge Natalia M. Combs Greene is rated in the bottom ten judges of the Washington D.C. area by the Robing Report.
The comments left about her professionalism are quite something.