Representative Leonard Boswell is dropping his defamation lawsuit against his 2008 Democratic primary challenger Ed Fallon, both sides confirmed today.
Boswell filed the lawsuit after Fallon claimed last September that people close to Boswell had informally offered him a job on the Congressman’s staff in early 2008, hoping to dissuade him from running for Congress himself. Fallon commented that he was surprised Boswell didn’t drop the lawsuit immediately after the November election. So was I. It’s hard for public figures to win a defamation lawsuit, and Boswell would have had trouble proving Fallon spoke falsely and with “actual malice.” Fallon could have reasonably believed a job offer was on the table, even if Boswell did not authorize any conversation between his associates and Fallon.
In a statement provided to the Des Moines Register, Boswell said, “While I maintain Fallon’s allegations are not true, there is little point in continuing with the litigation and having a spectacle occur to clear my name as I will not be seeking elected office in the future. I know the truth and that is good enough for me at this point. I look forward to continuing my life after politics.”