- Hollis Johnson
- The longtime Trump adviser Roger Stone was arrested Friday after being indicted by the special counsel Robert Mueller’s office.
- The indictment accuses Stone of lying in sworn testimony to Congress and trying to persuade another witness to do the same by threatening the witness and his dog.
- Why would Stone lie to Congress? Is it because he has delusions of grandeur? Does he think he’s a character in some mob film playing out in his head?
Americans, and those interested in America’s well-being, should all read the indictment the special counsel Robert Mueller’s office just filed against Roger Stone Jr.
It accuses Stone of lying in sworn testimony to Congress and of trying to persuade another witness to do the same by threatening the witness and his dog and by telling the witness he would be “a fool” if he testified or turned anything over to investigators.
Stone popped up as a person of interest for Congress when it began investigating Russia’s 2016 hack of the Democratic National Committee and the subsequent publication of stolen emails obtained through that hack by WikiLeaks.
Lawmakers brought Stone in because in 2016 Stone had publicly bragged about having contact with an intermediary he said was in touch with WikiLeaks and its founder, Julian Assange.
When Stone testified before the House Intelligence Committee in 2017, he was asked whether there had been any written communication between him and this intermediary.
Stone said there had not been – that his conversations had been over the phone.
The odd thing is that, while those emails and texts portray a person who is underhanded and conniving, they don’t seem to suggest that Stone was at the center of any conspiracy or collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign.
According to the story told by the indictment, Stone spent much of the summer of 2016 texting and emailing back and forth with two people about their contact with WikiLeaks (called “Organization 1” in the document).
According to the document, the two people are an “online media commentator” called “Person 1” and a “radio host” called “Person 2.” (According to reports, “Person 1” is the right-wing political commentator Jerome Corsi, and “Person 2” is the comedian and radio host Randy Credico.)
The emails and texts, most of which were exchanged in the summer of 2016, contain a lot of back and forth about whether WikiLeaks would publish the hacked emails, when, and what they would contain.
The texts also reveal Stone was someone who couldn’t get his calls returned by senior people in the Trump campaign.
So the big question is: Why?
Why would Stone lie to Congress about the existence of such written communication?
Is it because he has delusions of grandeur? Does he think he’s a character in some mob film playing out in his head?
At one point, the indictment accuses Stone of telling Person 2 to do a “Frank Pentangeli.”
For those who don’t understand the reference, the indictment helpfully explains: “Frank Pentangeli is a character in the film ‘The Godfather: Part II,’ which both Stone and Person 2 had discussed, who testifies before a congressional committee and in that testimony claims not to know critical information that he does in fact know.”
(The indictment does not mention what happened to Pentangeli in the film. It’s not good.)
Or might Stone have lied about the existence of written communication between him and intermediaries because there are more damning texts we still haven’t seen? Are there texts between him and another person who is neither Person 1 or Person 2?
Or, perhaps, is Stone just kind of a clown?
Remember: He does have a tattoo of Richard Nixon on his body.