Self-proclaimed political "dirty trickster" Roger Stone always portrays himself as the savviest, shrewdest, smartest operator in whatever room he's in. That's why it's curious that Stone, who years ago thought it was a good idea to have disgraced former president Richard Nixon's face tattooed on his back, would agree to allow a Danish documentary film crew follow and record him for two years leading up to the Jan. 6, 2021 insurrection.
A report in today's Washington Post details what that video crew saw and heard. It's not helpful to Stone's pronouncements that he had nothing to do with former president Donald Trump's attempts to overturn the legitimate election results.
From the report: "As a mob ransacked the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, Roger Stone, Donald Trump’s longest-serving political adviser, hurried to pack a suitcase inside his elegant suite on the fifth floor of the Willard hotel. He wrapped his tailored suits in trash bags, reversed his black face mask so its “Free Roger Stone” logo was hidden, then slipped out of town for a hastily arranged private flight from Dulles International Airport.
“I really want to get out of here,” Stone told an aide, as they were filmed at the hotel by a Danish camera crew for a documentary on the veteran Republican operative. Stone said he feared prosecution by the incoming attorney general, Merrick Garland. “He is not a friend,” Stone said.
Washington Post reporters reviewed more than 20 hours of video filmed for the documentary, “A Storm Foretold,” which will be released later this year. The footage, along with other reporting by the Washington Post, provides the most comprehensive account to date of Stone’s involvement in the former president’s effort to overturn the election and in the rallies in Washington that spilled over into violence on Jan. 6.
Stone privately coordinated post-election protests with prominent figures, and in January he communicated by text message with leaders of far-right groups that had been involved in the attack on the Capitol, the footage shows. The filmmakers did not capture conversations between Stone and Trump, but on several occasions, Stone told them or his associates that he remained in contact with the president.
Stone has denied having any involvement in the Capitol riot. "Let me stay this as categorically as I can. Any claim, assertion, implication or otherwise any accusation that I either knew about or was involved in any of the illegal acts in Washington, D.C. on January 6 is categorically false. There is no evidence to the contrary and an honest investigation will prove that," he told Newsmax last year.
Stone steadfastly has refused to give testimony or provide evidence to the House select committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack. Last week, he sued members of the panel to try to block them from using a subpoena to obtain his telephone records. On the day of the attack, as he packed his bags, Stone told the filmmakers the riot was a mistake and would be “really bad” for the pro-Trump movement.
On the eve of the 2020 election, however, he seemed to welcome the prospect of clashes with left-wing activists. In a recorded conversation, as an aide spoke of driving trucks into crowds of racial justice protesters, Stone said: “Once there’s no more election, there’s no reason why we can’t mix it up. These people are going to get what they’ve been asking for.”
Stone declined the Washington Post's requests for an interview.
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