A federal judge on Thursday tossed a lawsuit filed by former Playboy model Karen McDougal that claimed she was defamed by Fox News host Tucker Carlson’s comments about her alleged affair with Donald Trump in 2006.

Carlson had accused McDougal of shaking down Trump for $150,000 in exchange for her silence about an alleged 10-month affair that began in 2006 — one year after he married Melania Trump.

U.S. District Judge Mary Kay Vyskocil granted Fox News’ motion to dismiss McDougal’s claim on the ground’s that the comments were not statements of fact.

“As Defendant notes, Mr. Carlson himself aims to ‘challenge political correctness and media bias,’” the judge wrote in her decision. “This ‘general tenor’ of the show should then inform a viewer that he is not ‘stating actual facts’ about the topics he discusses and is instead engaging in ‘exaggeration’ and ‘non-literal’ commentary.”

She added, “This overheated rhetoric is precisely the kind of pitched commentary that one expects when tuning in to talk shows like ‘Tucker Carlson Tonight.’”

Judge Vyskocil wrote that McDougal as a public figure had also failed to prove that Carlson acted with actual malice.

McDougal’s defamation suit stemmed from statements Carlson made shortly before Michael Cohen’s sentencing for making hush-money payments to her and another alleged Trump paramour, porn star Stormy Daniels.

“Remember the facts of the story,” he said Dec. 10, 2018. “These are undisputed. Two women approached Donald Trump and threatened to ruin his career and humiliate his family if he doesn’t give them money. Now that sounds like a classic case of extortion.”

McDougal entered the national spotlight in 2016 when the Wall Street Journal reported that she’d had an affair with Trump, and that the National Enquirer had paid her for the exclusive rights to her story, which they never ran.

A subsequent investigation revealed that Trump had directed his close friend David Pecker, then-CEO of the National Enquirer’s parent company, to make the payment to McDougal in an effort to kill the story in the lead up to the 2016 presidential election.

Trump then allegedly directed Cohen to reimburse Pecker. Cohen eventually pleaded guilty to federal campaign finance law violations for paying off McDougal and Daniels and got three years in prison.

McDougal’s attorney Eric Bernstein didn’t immediately return a request for comment.

“Karen McDougal’s lawsuit attempted to silence spirited opinion commentary on matters of public concern,” said a Fox News spokesperson. The court today held that the First Amendment plainly prohibits such efforts to stifle free speech. The decision is a victory not just for Fox News Media, but for all defenders of the First Amendment.”

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