Rep. Tulsi Gabbard has filed a defamation lawsuit against former secretary of state and 2016 Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton for claiming the Hawaii congresswoman was a Russian asset.
The suit, filed in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York, accuses Clinton of having “smeared” Gabbard’s “political and personal reputation.”
“Gabbard, a U.S. Representative for Hawaii’s 2nd congressional district, asserts in her complaint that Clinton deliberately and maliciously made false statements in an attempt to derail Rep. Gabbard’s campaign, by alleging that Gabbard is a ‘Russian asset,’ a statement via Gabbard’s campaign reads.
Gabbard is one of several Democrats vying for their party’s 2020 presidential nominations.
“Tulsi Gabbard is a loyal American civil servant who has also dedicated her life to protecting the safety of all Americans,” the statement adds.
“Rep. Gabbard’s presidential campaign continues to gain momentum, but she has seen her political and personal reputation smeared and her candidacy intentionally damaged by Clinton’s malicious and demonstrably false remarks.”
Gabbard is also an officer in the Hawaii Army National Guard.
In October, Clinton appeared on a podcast hosted by David Plouffe, President Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign manager, in which she appears to have claimed Gabbard was an asset of Moscow.
“[Russia] has a bunch of sites and bots and other ways of supporting [Gabbard] so far. That’s assuming Jill Stein will give it up, which she might not because she is also a Russian asset,” Clinton asserted.
“They know they can’t win without a third-party candidate, and so I do not know who it’s going to be, but I can guarantee you they will have a vigorous third-party challenge in the key states that they most need it,” the former First Lady added.
Hours later, Clinton’s comments drew a strong rebuke from Gabbard, who then called Clinton the “queen of warmongers.”
… concerted campaign to destroy my reputation. We wondered who was behind it and why. Now we know — it was always you, through your proxies and …
— Tulsi Gabbard 🌺 (@TulsiGabbard) October 18, 2019