Will unvaccinated Sarah Palin’s COVID positive result delay case against NYT?

As the nation waited with bated breath for the historic case of Alaska former Republican vice-presidential nominee Sarah Palin’s defamation case against the New York Times, a federal judge told a courtroom that she had tested positive for COVID. Late March 2021, the former Alaskan governor said that she had tested positive for the coronavirus and had “bizarre symptoms.”

Last month, Sarah Palin said that she would get a COVID-19 vaccine “over my dead body.” However, the vocal critic of vaccines had asked people to mask up when she got Covid for the first time last year.

Jed Rakoff, who is a judge at the Manhattan federal court said that he had received the news that Sarah Palin had tested positive for the coronavirus on Sunday evening. According to Reuters he said that “She is of course unvaccinated.” He said that he was waiting for a second test result. This result would determine the outcome of the trial; whether it would proceed forward or whether it would face a delay.

He called for an extended break in the hearing. This break would give the 57-year old time to take another Covid test. After the break, of about an hour, Palin’s attorney told the federal judge that she had once again tested positive.

Rakoff announced a delay in proceedings so that Palin would have time to recover from a Covid infection. He said, “I look forward to seeing you all, and Ms. Palin, on February 3rd.”

In 2017, Sarah Palin had filed a lawsuit against The New York Times (NYT). The outlet had published an editorial linking her political action committee (PAC) to a mass shooting that took place in Arizona in 2011.

The Times apologized for the error in print. However, Palin went ahead and filed the lawsuit. The proceedings are expected to be watched closely as it will consider First Amendment protections for free speech against a right of a person not to be defamed, even if the person is a prominent public figure.



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