Political consultant Roger Stone (shown above right) on Wednesday denied reports he had emails that were hacked from the Democratic Party weeks before they were leaked prior to the presidential election of 2016.
Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton was weeks away from Election Day in the fall of 2016 when her campaign suffered a massive data breach.
John Podesta (above left) was serving as her chairman when his emails were stolen in the attack.
Stone is now being accused of knowing the information ahead of time based on a tweet he sent out six weeks prior to the event, in August 2016.
WikiLeaks eventually published many of the emails in what became a major political controversy during an already heated election. Jerome Corsi, an author and political commentator, was allegedly contacted by Stone to get in touch with WikiLeaks before passing along the information to the president weeks before the emails were published.
“[My tweet] was based on a briefing I got with Dr. Corsi regarding the Podesta brothers’ extensive and lucrative business dealings in Russia,” Stone told host Laura Ingraham on “The Laura Ingraham Show” on Wednesday morning.
“My tweet wasn’t controversial until six weeks later when the Podesta emails were published by WikiLeaks. So why would I be asking him for a cover story? There was no congressional investigation, there was no Mueller investigation, there was no public controversy.”
NBC News first reported that Corsi told investigators on September 6 that Stone asked him in the summer leading up to the presidential election to get in touch with WikiLeaks about the information. Special counsel Robert Mueller sent him a draft plea agreement to get him to admit to lying to federal investigators.
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Corsi has rejected the agreement while describing the special counsel team as thugs.
“This is a perfect example of what happens when runaway federal prosecutors hotbox a 72-year-old for a 40-hour interrogation and they get him to say things that are simply not true,” Stone said.
The plea agreement stipulated his team would not oppose Corsi’s requesting a sentence of probation if he agreed to plead guilty to lying to federal investigators.
The special counsel team has been investigating whether Trump or his associates colluded with Russian interests to sway the outcome of the 2016 election.
“What they want to prove is that I somehow received from WikiLeaks or Julian Assange or Jerome Corsi or Guccifer 2.0 or Santa Claus, for that matter, the Podesta emails, which were allegedly stolen, or the DNC emails, which were allegedly hacked, and passed them onto Donald Trump,” Stone said on Wednesday morning. “And none of that happened. I received nothing and therefore passed on nothing.”
Stone admits that he was interested in what information WikiLeaks had, but only because of reports that had emerged on it. WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange had already teased that he had damaging information during interviews starting in June 2016.
“The emails that were leaked yesterday [show that] like any other politico or every political reporter in America, I wanted to know what it was that Assange had,” Stone said.
“I hyped that as much as possible on my Twitter feed. Why?” said Stone. “To get the voters and the media to pay attention to it. Whatever it was I was assured it was damaging to her and guess what, Laura? It was.”
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