If you’ve spent the past half a day being certain that Donald Trump committed obstruction of justice by firing FBI Director James Comey, but wondering if it can be proven, here’s all the evidence you’re probably going to need. Trump fired Comey after one of his own alleged co-conspitators in the Russia scandal encouraged him to do it.
Buried near the end of a nearly thirty paragraph missive from Politico this evening is what might be the real lede: Roger Stone, who has long been reported to be one of the key suspects in the FBI’s Trump-Russia investigation, spent the past weeks actively encouraging Donald Trump to fire James Comey (link). This doesn’t mean that Trump pulled the trigger simply because Stone told him to. But it does mean that he sought the counsel of one of the suspects in an active FBI investigation when it came to firing the head of the FBI. And that’s quite damning.
Roger Stone has already admitted to having been communicating with the Russian hacker Guccifer 2.0, who stole Democratic Party emails during the campaign, and WikiLeaks, which strategically released those emails to help rig the election in Donald Trump’s favor. That’s landed him near the center of the Trump-Russia scandal.
Stone seems to think he’s off the hook now, having tweeted a graphic of Trump saying “You’re fired” in reality show fashion. But if anything, Trump’s inappropriate firing of Comey is likely to accelerate the Russia scandal, as this should motivate just enough Republicans in Congress to join the Democrats in taking more decisive action in the scandal. And now Stone had unwittingly helped that cause by admitting that Trump fired Comey after one of the FBI’s targets told him to. Help fund Palmer Report
Bill Palmer is the publisher of the political news outlet Palmer Report