Friday, April 12, 2019
TKC EXCLUSIVE!!! DECLARATION OF STEVE ROSE DISPUTES DEFAMATION CLAIM OF KANSAS STATE SENATOR DENNING!!!
Friday followup in an ongoing complaint moving through the legal system.
Most of these cases are inevitably settled but an objective observer can see the tide turning in favor of journalist Steve Rose.
Moreover . . .
IN A DECLARATION FILED TO TODAY IN JOCO COURTS STEVE ROSE DISPUTES THE CLAIMS OF KANSAS STATE SENATOR DENNING AND OFFERS A GLIMPSE AT HIS COUNTER ARGUMENT!!!
Here are the highlights with TKC marking the most important passage that wins this case:
DECLARATION OF STEVE ROSE
The main points . . .
“Denning’s claims must fail because of basic free-speech principles which are firmly embedded in the legal traditions of this nation and the state of Kansas, and which afford the highest level of protection possible to criticism of public officials. Our legal system is based on the bedrock principle that “the people, not the government, possess the absolute sovereignty,” and censorial power therefore exits “in the people over the Government, and not in the Government over the people.”
The allegations are “vague and deliberately generalized,” asserting that the entire column is false and legally actionable because the conversation occurred at a different time than the article may have implied, and that Denning never used the exact words that Rose clearly paraphrased. Denning’s chief of staff even acknowledged that the meeting between Rose and Denning at Houlihan’s restaurant, where Denning made the statements to Rose, had occurred, but emphasized with regard to one part of the column, that Rose’s description was “not how Denning would explain it.” That is not enough to establish a viable defamation claim.
In reality, Rose’s comments are substantially true in that they report Denning’s “steadfast, unchanged” views on Medicaid expansion which he has voiced for years.
Given Denning’s manifest opposition to expansion “which is evident even to casual political observers, Denning would have a stronger case against Rose if the article in question had stated that Denning thought Kansas could afford Kelly’s proposal.”
The law presumes that someone in such a powerful position as Denning’s will be a person “of fortitude,” who is “able to thrive in a hardy climate,” and should expect to be subjected to criticism.
Many of the statements of which Denning complains are “fairly generic references to common public-policy positions, which would be expected of a former health-industry executive, who is almost single-handedly blocking Medicaid expansion in the State of Kansas.”
“[D]espite Denning’s sweeping and ill-founded assertions that all references to him in the challenged column were false and defamatory, he cannot hide from or disguise his continued, well-documented opposition to expanding Medicaid in Kansas.”
Developing . . .