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Key Words: Sarah Palin’s positive COVID test delays trial in defamation case against the New York Times. Says judge: ‘She is, of course, unvaccinated.’


“‘She is, of course, unvaccinated.’”

That was U.S. District Judge Jed Rakoff addressing the positive COVID-19 test that caused a trial postponement in a case brought against the New York Times by former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin.

Trial had been set to begin Monday in Palin’s libel lawsuit against the New York Times NYT, -0.55%, according to the Associated Press.

Palin, the 2008 vice presidential nominee of the Republican Party, has been vocal in her opposition to uptake of the COVID-19 vaccines. Last month she told a group in Arizona that “it will be over my dead body that I’ll have to get a shot.”

See also: Carhartt CEO says an unvaccinated workforce is a ‘risk that our company is unwilling to take’

Palin has said in the past that she has contracted COVID-19.

Palin’s case surrounds a claim that the New York Times damaged her reputation in a 2017 editorial. She argues that the piece falsely asserted her political rhetoric contributed to the 2011 shooting of then–U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords of Arizona — the New York Times admitted the initial wording of the editorial was flawed, but not in an intentional or reckless way that made it libelous, according to the Associated Press.

From the archives (January 2011): Boehner: Shooting won’t deter Congress

The trial can begin Feb. 3 if Palin has recovered, Rakoff said.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other experts and authorities, COVID-19 vaccines are safe and help protect people against COVID-19. “All currently authorized and recommended COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, and CDC does not recommend one vaccine over another,” the CDC has said. “The most important decision is to get a COVID-19 vaccination as soon as possible.”

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