Tag: roger stone
Exposed Again: The Criminal Intent Behind Trump's Fascist Coup Plot

Exposed Again: The Criminal Intent Behind Trump's Fascist Coup Plot

Now that former President Donald Trump has been indicted not once but twice for attempting to steal the 2020 presidential election, his apologists say he was merely pursuing his constitutional right to contest the results. They insist that he truly believed his campaign was undone by massive voter fraud and that all the post-election machinations carried out by him and his cronies were innocent and sincere.

Unfortunately for them, evidence continues to emerge showing not only that their claims of fraud were fabricated — and ruled to be false in 61 lawsuits — but that Trump had planned to carry out a conspiracy against democracy well before the election results were even fully tabulated.

Nobody should be surprised to learn that the latest confirmation of the Trump's campaign's nefarious intent features Roger Stone, the veteran dirty trickster and pardoned felon, who must have coined his "Stop the Steal" slogan while peering into a mirror. If there was an attempted "steal," he was one of the perps.

In his boundless vanity, Stone allowed himself to be videotaped by Danish documentarian Christoffer Guldbrandsen while dictating a memo that outlined a plan to substitute fake electors supporting Trump for legitimate electors supporting Joe Biden. That moment occurred on November 5, 2020 — two days after the election and two days before Biden was declared the election's winner.

Speaking slowly as an aide typed on a laptop, Stone declared: "Any legislative body may decide on the basis of overwhelming evidence of fraud to send electors to the electoral college who accurately reflect the president's legitimate victory in their state, which was illegally denied him through fraud."

Stone is not a lawyer, and that notion of an "independent state legislature" acting to overturn the actual election result in any state was thoroughly discredited before the Supreme Court rejected it. John Eastman, the conservative Trump attorney who conceived the fake electors scheme, has confessed that he knew all along the theory was hollow and that even Republican-appointed judges would dismiss it.

But the validity of the theory was beside the point, as Stone himself suggested in another interview with Guldbrandsen. The coup plot formulated by Stone and the rest of Trump's team foresaw a sudden assertion of illegitimate authority to seize control and void the election. Michael Flynn, Trump's pardoned former national security adviser, even urged a plot that would conclude with the imposition of military dictatorship. They meant to force the country to accept the outcome they demanded, with a spasm of military violence wherever that proved necessary.

That was why Stone — and Steve Bannon, the fascistic former White House strategist, also pardoned by Trump - both predicted, quite accurately, that Trump would declare himself the victor on Election Night regardless of the tabulated results. "I really do suspect that it'll still be up in the air," Stone said on November 1, 2020, anticipating the election a few days later. "When that happens, the key thing to do is to claim victory. Possession is nine-tenths of the law."

Speaking in the voice of Trump, he enunciated what he thought his client should say: "No, we won." If those tabulated results showed Biden in the lead, Stone added, then Trump should say:"Sorry, we're not accepting them. We're challenging them in court."

And not just in court, where all but one of Trump's challenges were repudiated by judges of both parties. "If the (Biden) electors show up at the Electoral College, armed guards will throw them out," Stone warned. Speaking again in Trump's voice, he went on, "I'm challenging all of it, and the judges we're going to, are judges I appointed."

None of that worked out according to Stone's expectations, as even Trump's appointees and his own vice president, Mike Pence, resisted the fake fraud charges, the phony electors and the entire coup plot. As articulated repeatedly by Stone, Bannon, Mike Flynn and others around Trump, the intent couldn't have been more brazenly authoritarian and illegal.

In early September 2020, Stone echoed Flynn on Alex Jones' Infowars show that in the event of a contested election, Trump should invoke the Insurrection Act, and arrest Bill and Hillary Clinton, the late Senate majority leader Harry Reid, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, and "anybody else who can be proven to be involved in illegal activity." He also urged Trump to shut down any publication that could supposedly be shown to have engaged in "seditious and illegal activities," and with its entire staff "arrested and taken into custody."

In short, the extremists around didn't hide their vision of a violent fascist takeover. That they couldn't execute the plan does not in any way exonerate them or Trump, who followed that plotline until it led to the mob attack on the Capitol. The latest video of Stone, preening and pontificating, is simply further proof of the criminal intent — what the law calls mens rea — that drove their attempt to overturn American democracy.

To find out more about Joe Conason and read features by other Creators Syndicate writers and cartoonists, visit the Creators Syndicate website at www.creators.com.

Roger Stone

Roger Stone Repeatedly Pushed Fake Elector Scheme After 2020 Election

After MSNBC’s Ari Melber aired video this week of right-wing political operative Roger Stone pushing for Republican legislatures to replace electors — similar in purpose to the fake electors scheme central to former President Donald Trump’s criminal indictments over his 2020 election theft attempt — Media Matters found multiple instances of Stone urging this version of election theft in right-wing media appearances and a social media post after the election.

As Melber emphasized in his August 16 scoop, Stone was shown dictating a memo on November 5, 2020, involving a plot to convince Republican-led state legislatures in multiple states Joe Biden won to replace legitimate electors with slates of false electors for Trump two days before major news organizations called the election for Biden. For his version of the fake electors scheme, Trump was charged on August 1 with conspiracy to defraud the United States, along with other criminal charges, and the fake electors plot was featured in his Georgia indictment as well.

Although Trump’s unindicted co-conspirators in that plot have been identified through the efforts of journalists, Stone’s name was not among them, and he had escaped attention over the indictments until now. In the 2020 election’s aftermath, Stone continued to push his scheme to replace Biden electors with illegitimate Trump electors in order to overturn the election in multiple appearances on far-right media programs and posts to his Telegram account.

In echoes of the discredited and unconstitutional Independent State Legislature theory, Stone claimed that the nonexistent evidence of fraud, which failed to win any court victories for the Trump team, could be used to persuade GOP-majority state legislatures to swap their electors from Biden to Trump. Stone's scheme would have pursued a different means to the same end to steal the election for Trump through the Electoral College.

  • Stone explained on Infowars’ The Alex Jones Show that he was “shooting for” Republican state lawmakers to overturn election results and sending Trump electors instead. “I don’t think patriots understand that the last chain in this process is the legislatures certifying who the electors who will go to the Electoral College are,” Stone said. “They are who we’re shooting for. … The state legislatures who are controlled by Republicans will make this final decision.” [Infowars, The Alex Jones Show, 11/10/20]
  • On Salem Media’s The Eric Metaxas Show, Stone said Trump should be able “to overturn a number of these state elections” and switch electors from Biden to himself. Stone explained: “There is a process here. We’re not done when ABC and The Associated Press say we are. The media does not choose who the president is, they have no legal right to declare anybody president. Only the Electoral College can do that, and we have a long way to go between now and the Electoral College meeting in the middle of December. The president has more than enough legal arguments to overturn a number of these state elections and award the delegates, pardon me, the electors, correctly, as required by law to the person who won the majority of the legal ballots cast.” [Salem Media Group, The Eric Metaxas Show, 11/13/20]
  • In a Telegram post, Stone wrote, “Republicans in the state legislatures have an obligation to review the massive evidence of voter fraud” before assigning electors. Stone argued that “neither the state nor federal courts have the final say in this epic saga” and that Republican legislators must determine “whether the election has been legally and honestly conducted, before deciding who should represent the state in the all-important electoral college.” [Telegram, 11/16/20]
  • On Alex Jones’ Infowars program again, Stone urged Trump supporters to contact GOP state legislators about stealing Biden electoral votes for Trump. During his appearance a month after the election, Stone advised Trump to focus on state legislatures instead of just the courts in his efforts to steal the election, and said: “I think supporters of the president in the key states need to begin now contacting the Republican state legislators … and urge them to support the president, to support an objective and honest count of the election and the certification of electors that will support Donald Trump at the Electoral College.” [Infowars, The Alex Jones Show, 12/2/20]

Reprinted with permission from Media Matters.

Roger Stone

MSNBC Fresh Proof Of Roger Stone Pushing Fake Elector Scheme (VIDEO)

MSNBC host Ari Melber on Wednesday's edition of The Beat released previously unseen footage of Republican operative Roger Stone purportedly dictating a memo that outlined the allegedly criminal scheme to send fraudulent electors to Washington as part of the plot by former President Donald Trump and his associates to steal the 2020 election.

Fulton County, Georgia District Attorney Fani Willis and Justice Department Special Counsel Jack Smith cited that plot in their respective indictments of Trump and his allies.

"Although state officials in all fifty states must ultimately certify the results of the voting in their state, the final decision as to who the state legislatures authorize be sent to the Electoral College is a decision made solely by the legislature," Stone said in the clip that was recorded by documentarian Christoffer Guldbrandesen. "Any legislative body may decide on the basis of overwhelming evidence of fraud to send electors to the electoral college who accurately reflect the president's legitimate victory in their state, which was illegally denied him through fraud. We must be prepared to lobby our Republican legislatures by personal contact and by demonstrating the overwhelming will of the people in their state in each state that this may need to happen."

Melber noted that Stone's representative "declined to comment."

Watch below or at this link.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.

Donald Trump

Enraged Trump Tells Roger Stone: 'Those Tapes Are My Tapes!'

Former President Donald Trump on Sunday confirmed the existence of audio recordings that could be used as evidence against him in a case about the mishandling of classified documents.

During an interview on Sunday with host Roger Stone, Trump responded to reports indicating he admitted he did not declassify some documents before leaving office with them. Those recordings are reportedly in the hands of special counsel Jack Smith.

"By the way, the tapes that you read about, those tapes are my tapes," Trump growled. "I gave them very willingly, the tapes."

Trump complained that President Joe Biden "probably doesn't have tapes" incriminating himself.

"I gave them the tapes!" he exclaimed before threatening to release tapes of the FBI searching Mar-a-Lago.

"I have tapes of the FBI during the raid. I didn't put them out because I was asked not to by them," he ranted. "But I have tapes of the raid by FBI. You want to see some tapes? Those are tapes."

Watch the video from WABC at this link.

Reprinted with permission from Alternet.