Stephen Richer inches closer to draining Kari Lake in defamation lawsuit

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Pretty much everything you need to know about the defamation lawsuit Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer filed against failed Republican governor candidate Kari Lake can be found in how eager they were to get to trial.

Richer was very eager.

Lake? Not. So. Much. In fact, not at all.

On Tuesday, Lake said she would forfeit her right to defend against Richer’s suit, no doubt terrified of what would come out during discovery. In a post on X, formerly Twitter, Richer responded, “Kari: You lied ... It was all B.S.

One of his attorneys, Ben Berwick, added, “It is extraordinary to see a defendant in civil litigation concede like this.”

Richer isn't targeting Lake's free speech

Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer
Maricopa County Recorder Stephen Richer

Earlier, one of Lake’s attorneys said that Lake was not going to allow Richer to impede her free speech.

But it wasn’t her free speech Richer was going after. It was the unproven claims of misconduct and election tampering made against Richer in order to grift gullible MAGA suckers, without seeming to care, at all, about the potential harm she was doing to Richer’s reputation.

Not to mention the potential physical harm that could have resulted from inflaming the emotions of those same gullible dupes.

As Richer put it in an op-ed for The Arizona Republic: “Not only would I obviously never do the things that she accuses me of, but also as a matter of Arizona law and election administration processes, I don’t even have responsibility for — or jurisdiction over — the printing of ballots on Election Day.

“Lake has continued to repeat these falsehoods, despite multiple court rulings that found her attacks to be unfounded.”

Dupes are in prison, but what of the instigators?

He added, “(Lake’s) words have provoked death threats from Lake’s followers. I’ve been forced to increase my personal and professional security while still watching over my shoulder.”

And for good reason.

A number of those gullible dupes made life-threatening threats against Richer and others. And a number of them are now doing time in prison, having been prosecuted for their crimes.

The instigators of those actions need not worry (unfortunately) about such harsh consequences.

Still, an eventual monetary judgement in a defamation lawsuit is no small thing.

And Richer is inching closer to draining a very swampy Lake.

Reach Montini at

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This article originally appeared on Arizona Republic: Kari Lake concedes defeat in defamation lawsuit. That's unusual