Roger Stone Arrested; Indicted on Seven Counts

Special Counsel Bob Mueller's investigation has led him to the doorstep of longtime conservative ratfucker and proud bearer of a Nixon back tat Roger Stone. Stone was indicted yesterday "by a federal grand jury in the District of Columbia on seven counts, including one count of obstruction of an official proceeding, five counts of false statements, and one count of witness tampering." He was arrested at his home early this morning.

You can read the entire indictment here. The gist: "STONE was contacted by senior Trump Campaign officials to inquire about future releases by Organization 1. By in or around early August 2016, STONE was claiming both publicly and privately to have communicated with Organization 1."

In plain language: Senior Trump campaign officials (note the plural) contacted Roger Stone to ask him to work with Wikileaks to get damaging information on Hillary Clinton via hacked emails.

None of this is a surprise. We even have some idea of who the "senior Trump campaign officials" are who were in communication with Stone. In November, the New York Times reported on an email exchange between Steve Bannon, then running Trump's campaign, and Stone about Wikileaks.

But surely it was not only Bannon. The indictment makes clear it was multiple Trump campaign officials who communicated with Stone about stolen emails, and it's reasonable to believe that most or all of the senior players on Trump's team were engaged on this subject.

Remember: The now-infamous meeting Don Trump Jr. had at Trump Tower with Kremlin-connected lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya was taken after Don Jr. was promised damaging information about Hillary Clinton. That meeting was also attended by Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort, and, within a half hour of his son having a meeting with Russians who promised to deliver some dirt on Clinton, Donald Trump tweeted at Clinton: "Where are your 33,000 emails that you deleted?"

One month later that [video autoplays] Trump invited the Russians to hack us, saying: "Russia, if you're listening, I hope you're able to find the 30,000 e-mails that are missing. I think you will probably be rewarded mightily by our press."

I suspect at minimum that the senior campaign officials who were aware of and/or in communication with Roger Stone about his interactions with Wikileaks regarding Clinton emails include: Donald Trump, Paul Manafort, Steve Bannon, Corey Lewandowski, Mike Pence, Don Jr., Ivanka Trump, Jared Kushner, and Kellyanne Conway.

There is also a strong possibility that Reince Priebus, who was then chair of the RNC and had, after initial criticisms of Trump, forged close ties to the Trump campaign, and who went on to become Trump's chief of staff, knew about the communications.

So, obviously, I'm quite glad that Stone will, one hopes, eventually be held accountable for his sinister participation in Trump campaign collusion with a foreign adversary to undermine our election.

But I also find it very curious why it's only Stone being indicted, and not the entire lot of co-conspirators. Why only Stone and not the "senior Trump campaign officials" with whom he communicated, at least some of whom are almost certainly walking around the halls of the White House with immense power and influence, which they wield relentlessly with overt malice?

"This is just the beginning" doesn't feel compelling to me at the moment, because it's clearly not the beginning. We're two years in, and Mueller is confident enough to say in the indictment that Stone communicated with senior Trump campaign officials, plural, which means he's got evidence, but he's not acting on it. I want to know why.

And I need, as a citizen of this country at greater risk with each passing day, to know why the fuck it is that this investigation still hasn't touched any of the people currently working in the Trump administration.

Paul Manafort, Michael Cohen, and Roger Stone need to face consequences, but none of them are empowered by the executive branch and none of them have continued access to state secrets.

I am realistic about the fact that Mueller can't frog-march Donald Trump and Mike Pence out of the West Wing, but Jared Kushner, Ivanka Trump, Kellyanne Conway, and Don Trump Jr. need their access and influence severed immediately. That is far more urgent than Roger Stone.

Who strikes me, by the way, as the least likely among this list of traitors to roll.

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