The House Intelligence Committee voted to send transcripts of its interview with Roger Stone in 2017 to special counsel Robert Mueller. Mueller had requested a copy of the transcripts earlier this week, per the Washington Post, and the House committee voted unanimously on Thursday to make them available as part of the Russia investigation, according to Talking Points Memo.
Stone has faced intensifying scrutiny over the past few months as the special counsel’s investigation focuses on his role in the events surrounding claims of alleged Russian interference during the 2016 election. Former federal prosecutors say that they believe that Mueller’s request for the transcripts could mean that he is preparing to charge Stone. The Republican is accused of working with Russian hackers to release prominent Democrat’s emails, and of working with WikiLeaks to release damaging information about Hillary Clinton.
Stone has denied any involvement, saying that he was tipped off about the situation but was not in communication with WikiLeaks or with Russian hackers — but Democratic lawmakers say that he may have lied while testifying under oath.
Representative Adam Schiff, who will become chairman of the House Intelligence Committee in January when Democrats take control of Congress, has said that Stone’s testimony is at odds with emails that have come to light about the situation. The California Democrat said that the transcripts of the interview will be released publicly in January, but that he plans to expedite the process.
Another Democrat, Representative Jim Himes, told CNN that he listened to Stone’s testimony and has “concerns” about whether or not the political strategist was being honest.
The committee previously voted to release dozens of transcripts related to the Russia investigation. These are pending a declassification review by the Director of National Intelligence.
NEW House intelligence committee just cleared a path for Mueller to charge Roger Stone if he choses. They voted to turn over his transcript to Special Counsel, a necessary step for prosecutors to bring charges. Me and @PostRoz @RoigFranzia https://t.co/n8rAAKegqN
— Carol Leonnig (@CarolLeonnig) December 20, 2018
Stone, who is a close ally of President Trump and a former campaign adviser, is asking that the transcript be released publicly so that he can defend himself from “partisan” attacks.
“Mr. Stone hereby demands the full and immediate release to the general public of the Transcript, such that the American citizenry and the world are able to evaluate for themselves Mr. Stone’s veracity,” said Grant Smith, Stone’s attorney.
Stone has said that he won’t testify against the president, which earned him praise from Trump in a tweet in early December.
“‘I will never testify against Trump.’ This statement was recently made by Roger Stone, essentially stating that he will not be forced by a rogue and out of control prosecutor to make up lies and stories about ‘President Trump,'” Trump wrote. “Nice to know that some people still have ‘guts!'”
“I will never testify against Trump.” This statement was recently made by Roger Stone, essentially stating that he will not be forced by a rogue and out of control prosecutor to make up lies and stories about “President Trump.” Nice to know that some people still have “guts!”
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 3, 2018