White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders responded to Roger Stone’s Friday morning indictment by special counsel Robert Mueller, in an early interview on CNN.
“This has nothing to do with the president and certainly nothing to do with the White House,” Sanders declared. CNN sought to get Sanders to clarify several times whether President Donald Trump ever discussed impending Wikileaks releases with Stone.
Sanders declined to comment at every instance, but insisted that the indictment demonstrates that no collusion between the Russian government and the Trump campaign has been proven.
Sanders also questioned the tactics used against Stone in his indictment, saying “a bigger question is if this is the standard, will the same standard apply to people like Hillary Clinton, James Comey, Clapper? Will we see the same people we know also made false statements, will that same standard apply?”
“Roger Stone is vindicated by the fact there was no Russian collusion,” Stone’s attorney said in a Friday morning statement, adding to The Daily Caller News Foundation that “they couldn’t find collusion, so they’re trying to get him on an immaterial charge.” (RELATED: Roger Stone: I Would Never Testify Against The President)
Stone was indicted on seven counts Friday morning by Mueller’s team on charges of allegedly making false statements to Congress, tampering with a witness and obstructing a government investigation. The indictment reveals that a “senior official” on the Trump 2016 campaign asked Stone to inquire with Wikileaks about possible impending releases of damaging information on Hillary Clinton in July 2016.
The crux of the indictment centers on alleged false statements by Stone to Congress in September 2017 testimony before the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence about his communications with the Trump campaign regarding Wikileaks.
The indictment claims Stone made false statements regarding “his possession of documents pertinent to HPSCI’s investigation; the source for his early August 2016 statements about [WikiLeaks]; requests he made for information from the head of [WikiLeaks]; his communications with his identified intermediary; and his communications with the Trump Campaign about [WikiLeaks].”