Both companies accuse Giuliani, as well as a number of mainstay TV personalities in the conservative media establishment, and the networks themselves, of spreading lies about them in the name of their conspiracy theory that former President Donald Trump actually won the election.
Unsurprisingly, this means when Giuliani makes appearances, even on his own show, the network airing it wants to limit their legal-exposure. This includes Giuliani's own radio show on WABC.
Before his show on Thursday, they aired this disclaimer:
"The views, assumptions and opinions expressed by [former President Donald Trump's personal attorney] and his guests and callers on his program are strictly their own, and do not necessarily represent the opinions, beliefs or policies of WABC Radio"
Giuliani responded in the moment on the air.
Rudy Giuliani lashes out at his employer, WABC, for adding a legal disclaimer to his radio show… https://t.co/oDjDzSJUSs— Media Matters (@Media Matters)1612475777.0
In the video, he states:
"I would have thought they would have told me about that before just doing what they just did. Rather insulting."
"And gives you a sense of how far this free speech thing has gone. And how they frighten everybody."
"I mean, we're in America, we're not in East Germany."
"They've got to warn you about me? I'm going to have to give that a lot of consideration."
"I also think putting it on without telling me—not the right thing to do. Not the right thing to do at all."
Some were amused.
@mmfa 🤣— MsJeanna (@MsJeanna)1612476029.0
@mmfa @WoodmanGav 😂😂— Paul Smith (@Paul Smith)1612475817.0
@mmfa This slayed me 😂😂😂— ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ (@¯\_(ツ)_/¯)1612476785.0
@mmfa #drooliani https://t.co/nvEq9EPn1O— Ms Penny 💋 (@Ms Penny 💋)1612477107.0
Others mused about how the network is reacting to Giuliani spreading misinformation.
@mmfa Should fire him. Lol 😂— Suzanne Cummins - MaskUp (@Suzanne Cummins - MaskUp)1612476136.0
@mmfa Love it. Maybe those who've been enabling The Big Lie are starting to realize lawsuits are starting to fly, t… https://t.co/JHzIA4sKwn— Lynne (@Lynne)1612477085.0
@mmfa I dunno just spit balling here but maybe @77WABCradio should cancel Rudy who wanted to overthrow the government for Trump?— Ray Munyan (@Ray Munyan)1612478766.0
And many had harsh words for Rudy himself.
@mmfa East Germany? That reference would’ve been relevant.... 30 years ago!— Dave (@Dave)1612476365.0
@mmfa Nobody's in East Germany. Nobody's been there since 1990 when it ceased to exist.— Sharon Heevor (@Sharon Heevor)1612476417.0
@mmfa East Germany? What century is he in?— Ginger Jo (@Ginger Jo)1612495195.0
While Giuliani is right that certain forms of speech are protected, the protection extends to repercussions from the government.
Libelous (written) or slanderous (spoken) speech is not protected from repercussions from the person or entities defamed. A lawyer should know this and understand the role and purpose of disclaimers.
It will be interesting to see how the landmark Dominion and Smartmatic defamation cases play out.