Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Judge Rejects Mark Winslow's Defamation Case Against Rep. Fleischmann and Chip Saltsman

Mark Winslow
A Nashville judge has thrown out a 3-year-old defamation case filed by former Chief of Staff of the Tennessee Republican Party Mark Winslow against U.S. Rep. Chuck Fleischmann and Chip Saltsman. In January 2011 Winslow filed suit against the state party, Fleischmann and Chip Saltsman claiming Fleischmann obtained confidential documents about his severance pay from the party and used the information in campaign ads critical of Robin Smith's management of the Tennessee Republican Party. Smith was running against Fleischmann in the hotly contested 2010 primary.

The suit asked for $750,000 in damages. Winslow claimed in his suit that he has not been able to get employment with other Republican groups or candidates. In November, the state GOP settled with Winslow, the details of that settlement not disclosed.

Circuit Court Judge Joe Binkley Jr. disagreed with Winslow's claim of defamation, saying the ads did not constitute defamation because Winslow was a public figure, what was said about him was  true and there was no proof Fleischmann or Saltsman acted out of malice. Maybe the Party settled too quickly.  I hope they didn't settle for much. I hate the thought of my contributions to the party being used to settle a suit that ended up being thrown out for lack of merit.

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