Sweeping Ed Butowsky lawsuit takes on 'left-wing media bias'

Texas financial adviser claims 'false allegations' by New York Times, CNN, Turner Broadcasting and Democratic National Committee 'upended' his life and business

Mar 14, 2019 @ 1:20 pm

By Jeff Benjamin

Plano, Texas-based financial adviser Ed Butowsky has filed a sweeping lawsuit against 22 defendants, including lawyers and members of the media, claiming defamation and malicious prosecution related to lawsuits that have been filed against him.

Mr. Butowsky, managing partner of Chapwood Capital Investment Management, who filed the lawsuit Tuesday in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, Sherman Division, said, "I'm suing people for telling lies."

"If what happened to me happened to anybody else, they would be devastated," Mr. Butowsky said. "The press needs to be reined in, because they think there are no repercussions for telling lies. And anyone who knows me knows I'm not going to sit back and just let people punch me."

The lawsuit names as defendants The New York Times, Turner Broadcasting System and the Democratic National Committee, along with journalists including Anderson Cooper, Gary Tuchman, Tom Kludt and Oliver Darcy of CNN, as well as a host of lawyers.

The lawsuit claims the lives of Mr. Butowsky, his family and co-workers were "upended by false allegations" that linked Mr. Butowsky to the investigation of alleged collusion between President Donald J. Trump and Russia dating back to July 2016.

The lawsuit charges "left-wing media bias" and cites as an example the media coverage of a January confrontation in Washington, D.C., between high school student Nick Sandmann and Native American activist Nathan Phillips, which initially portrayed Mr. Sandmann as the aggressor. Mr. Sandmann's parents have since filed a $250 million lawsuit against The Washington Post, claiming defamation.

Much of the media coverage that Mr. Butowsky takes issue with relates to fallout from a since-retracted May 2017 Fox News story about the murder of Democratic National Committee staffer Seth Rich in 2016.

Mr. Butowsky, who offered to help Mr. Rich's parents pay for a private investigator to investigate their son's death, ultimately faced four lawsuits related to the retracted Fox News report.

Two of those lawsuits that have been dismissed are the basis of Mr. Butowsky's filing Tuesday.

An example of the fallout felt by Mr. Butowsky was Charles Schwab Corp.'s booting his advisory practice off its custodial platform in early 2018.

Mr. Butowsky has filed a $100 million lawsuit against Schwab, charging the custodian with political bias. That lawsuit is now headed for arbitration.

"After the lawsuits were filed on Ed, it was open season on him," said Ty Clevenger, Mr. Butowsky's New York-based lawyer, who filed Tuesday's lawsuit.

"We're trying to clean up the damage they caused," Mr. Clevenger said.

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