A rivalry between the city of Santa Clara’s weekly newspaper and an upstart blog has transfigured into an outright legal battle. In a lawsuit filed last month, Santa Clara Weekly Publisher Miles Barber accuses his former reporter Robert Haugh of defamation, libel and trying to undermine the newspaper’s relationship with the city, which it relies on to buy legal ads. In his claim, Barber accuses Haugh of spreading “numerous false statements” via his website Santa Clara News Online, including that the Weekly isn’t authorized to publish legal notices, skips publication dates and fails to give advertisers a return on investment. Barber’s suit also takes issue with an opinion piece written by Haugh that paints the publisher as a misogynist who disproportionately criticizes the city’s female mayor and councilors. Because of Haugh’s commentary, the claim alleges, the Weekly has lost ad revenue, readers and “now has its business relationship with Santa Clara imminently threatened.” In columns preceding the lawsuit, Haugh has likened Barber to President Trump because of the publisher’s registered lobbying for high-density development and remarks about how Mayor Lisa Gillmor and other women on the council can barely spell their own names. Barber, for his part, accused his erstwhile scribe of disseminating “fake news.” Of note in this whole affray: the firm hired by the Weekly is none other than that of John Mlnarik, who won a defamation lawsuit and a $400,000 judgment against another blogger, James Rowen, a few years back. The specific attorney working on the case, however, is one Bill Winters, a 2014 Santa Clara University law school grad who looks not a day over 12 on the firm’s website. Haugh called Barber a bully and appealed to readers to donate money for his legal defense. As of Thursday afternoon, he had raised close to $5,600—almost enough to hire his own attorney.