Former U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney Sues Newspaper for Libel

By: Former U.S. Rep. Cynthia McKinney has filed a lawsuit against The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, claiming the paper libeled her in at least two editorials and a news article.

The lawsuit was filed Thursday in Fulton County State Court against the newspaper, its parent company, Cox Enterprises, as well as its publisher, managing editor and editorial page editor Cynthia Tucker.

Among other allegations, the lawsuit alleges the paper contained libelous and defamatory statements in two of Tucker's 2006 columns, including one about the congresswoman's altercation with a Capitol Hill police officer in a Washington office building. That column was included in a submission that won Tucker the Pulitzer Prize earlier this year.

The lawsuit seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

McKinney, a Democrat who lost to U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson in last year's party primary, is asking for unspecified monetary damages.

Her lawyer, J.M. Raffauf, didn't return a phone message left at his office by The Associated Press on Sunday. An attorney for the newspaper, Peter Canfield, called the allegations "frivolous" and said he would move to have them dismissed as soon as the paper is served with the suit.


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