As the investigation into Donald Trump’s Russia scandal has accelerated and escalated of late, one of the lingering questions has been what’s happened to Roger Stone in all of this. He’s obviously been at the center of suspicion due to his admitted communications with Russian puppet Julian Assange during the election, but it’s never been clear what specific criminal charges (if any) he might end up getting nailed on. Now it turns out Special Counsel Robert Mueller has Stone nailed.
Stone had long publicly claimed that he had been communicating with Assange through an intermediary. To prove Stone guilty of something like conspiracy against the United States, it would need to be proven that he was specifically plotting to try to alter the outcome of the election. Maybe Mueller has that kind of evidence, maybe he doesn’t. But here’s what Mueller does have: Stone lied to Congress under oath about the nature of those communications.
It turns out Stone was communicating directly with Assange during the election, according to respected reporter Natasha Bertrand (link). Now it doesn’t matter if Mueller can prove that those conversations constituted a crime, because Stone’s decision to lie about it to Congress is a crime. Mueller can charge Stone with lying under oath at any time, and he can then use that as leverage to force Stone to cut a plea deal and confess to what really went on during his conversations.
In past weeks we’ve seen that Robert Mueller is planning to bust anyone and everyone who has illegally tried to interfere with the Trump-Russia investigation in any way, shape or form. If he’s busting obscure attorney Alex Van Der Zwaan for this sort of thing, he’s certainly going to bust someone as central as Roger Stone. Will Stone flip on his lifelong friend Trump, or will he take his chances at trial? We’ll see. But now we know that Mueller has Stone nailed, and to the delight of many in the Resistance, Stone is clearly going down one way or the other.
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report