MyPillow CEO Mike Lindell is suing a pair of election machine manufacturers as part of his ongoing legal battle over debunked claims that the 2020 presidential election was stolen.
In an 82-page complaint filed in Minnesota federal court this week and laced with Orwellian and science-fiction references, Lindell accused Dominion Voting Systems and Smartmatic of "weaponizing the litigation process to silence political dissent and suppress evidence showing voting machines were manipulated to affect outcomes in the November 2020 general election."
Lindell remains one of the most prominent purveyors of the discredited theory that election machines were rigged and hacked to steal votes from former President Donald Trump in favor of President Joe Biden last year.
State and federal election officials, the U.S. Department of Justice and the intelligence community all concluded that no widespread fraud occurred in the 2020 election. Judges nationwide have meanwhile dismissed dozens of court challenges that sought to overturn the 2020 election results.
Earlier this year, Dominion filed a $1.3 billion defamation lawsuit in federal court in Washington, D.C., against both Lindell and his Chaska-based MyPillow company over Lindell's claims, which recycled allegations that originated elsewhere and were broadcast in multiple "docu-movies" Lindell produced.
"This meritless lawsuit is an increasingly desperate attempt to distract from the harm Mike Lindell and MyPillow continue to cause Dominion and the democratic process itself," a Dominion spokesperson said Friday.
The new lawsuit filed on behalf of Lindell in Minnesota federal court this week repeats many of the allegations outlined in a similar suit filed by MyPillow in April. Lindell has also asked a judge to dismiss Dominion's defamation suit.
Lindell's new suit alleges that the two voting equipment companies violated the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) Act, a 1970 law typically reserved for criminal cases against organized crime but which also allows for civil claims.
Lindell is also suing for abuse of process, defamation, depravation of civil rights by actions under color of state law, civil conspiracy and a violation of the Support and Advocacy clause alleging that the companies conspired to silence Lindell as he investigated lead changes in key swing states after election night.
Lindell is represented by Alec Beck in Minneapolis and Douglas Daniels and Heath Novosad of Daniels & Tredennick PLLC in Houston. Until late Thursday, Beck was a partner at Barnes & Thornburg LLP, but in a statement Friday the firm said that Beck is no longer employed there after he filed Lindell's suit without his management's approval.
"Late last night, firm management became aware of the filing of the complaint which was done without receiving firm authorization pursuant to internal firm approval procedures," a spokesperson said Friday. "The firm has withdrawn as local counsel in this matter and has ended the client relationship. The attorney representing the client in this matter is no longer with the firm."
In an e-mail Friday, Daniels told the Star Tribune that "every American should want to see the First Amendment prevail. We would not have filed this lawsuit if we did not believe Mike should and will prevail."
In the complaint, his attorneys estimated that he could lose up to $2 billion in damages related to Dominion's and Smartmatic's "collective role in their conspiracy and enterprise to harm him." The complaint also alleged that Lindell has received death threats because of his speaking out about election fraud and accused Dominion and Smartmatic of leading a "cancel culture" campaign against him.
"Many of their victims lack the resources to fight back and expose the defendants' scheme for what it is — an authoritarian abuse of state power fueled by the virtually unlimited resources from their ideological comrades," Daniels wrote in the civil complaint filed this week. "But Mike Lindell has the resources and the will to fight back, albeit at great personal and financial cost; Mike Lindell believes the future of the American republic depends on fighting back against censorship of information concerning the fundamental aspect of our republic — fair and secure elections."
Stephen Montemayor • 612-673-1755