Political Animal

The Big Takeaway From the Release of the Comey Memos

The memos former FBI Director James Comey wrote about his meetings with Donald Trump have been released. As I noted yesterday, the president’s enablers in Congress had threatened to hold Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein in contempt of Congress or impeach him if he didn’t respond to their demands. But the president’s allies were demanding that these memos be released to congressional committees. For example, here is the letter from Representatives Nunes, Goodlatte and Gowdy to Rosenstein:

It demands that copies of the memos be released to the three committees chaired by these Republicans and states, “There is no legal basis for withholding these materials from Congress.” In other words, they weren’t asking for the memos to be released publicly.

However, simultaneous to the release of these memos to Congress, they were also released to the media—specifically to the Associated Press. It is worth asking how that happened.

In the past, Nunes has used documents like these to cherry-pick the information he wants to release publicly. That is what we saw with the memo he wrote that was used to accuse the FBI of relying on the Steele dossier for their FISA warrant to surveil Carter Page.

It is unclear at this point whether their demand to have the Comey memos released to Congress was an attempt to do the same thing or whether it was simply a request that they thought Rosenstein would deny, providing an excuse for him to be fired. But based on what we now know about the memos, I doubt their intent was for these documents to become public, because they basically corroborate everything Comey has said at the exact same time that the former FBI director is traveling around the country to promote his book.

In other words, it looks like Rosenstein responded to their demands by not only releasing these memos to the congressional committees, but by allowing them to be released publicly. That cuts off either aim Trump’s enablers had in mind. They can’t hold him in contempt of Congress or impeach him for refusal to comply and they can’t cherry-pick what is released to the public.

The fact that these memos merely corroborate what Comey has said publicly makes them a non-issue for the ongoing investigation into whether the president obstructed justice. His legal team didn’t learn much of anything that they didn’t already know about the case Mueller is putting together on that front. The two new pieces of information are that Trump was clearly obsessed with former FBI Deputy Director Andy McCabe, whose wife ran as a Democrat in Virginia and lost, and that before he fired Michael Flynn, Trump said “the guy has serious judgement issues.”

In the end, it looks like once again the people in charge of this investigation demonstrated that they can stay one step ahead of Donald Trump and his enablers. That is the major takeaway from this episode.

Mueller Affirms the Investigation of Manafort as a Back Channel to Russia

Donald Trump and his surrogates have often claimed that Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictments against associates like Paul Manafort were for crimes they were alleged to have committed outside of their involvement in the 2016 campaign and that means there was “no collusion.”

That is basically the argument Manafort’s lawyers took up before U.S. District Judge Amy Berman Jackson to argue that the charges against their client for fraud and money-laundering in his work for the pro-Russian government in Ukraine should be dropped.

Manafort’s lawyers say those alleged crimes have nothing to do with Mueller’s central mission — to determine whether anyone in the Trump campaign had links to the Russian government.

That prompted an important statement from the Mueller team.

Justice Department attorney Michael Dreeben said prosecutors were justified in investigating Manafort because he had served as Trump’s campaign chairman. “He had long-standing ties to Russia-backed politicians,” Dreeben told Jackson. “Did they provide back channels to Russia? Investigators will naturally look at those things.”

Dreeben didn’t exactly give away the store with that argument. He simply said that of course prosecutors would investigate whether Manafort’s ties to Russian politicians provided the Trump campaign with a back channel to coordinate activities with Moscow.

Since the one piece of publicly available evidence that might answer that question is the Steele dossier, let’s take a look at what it says about Manafort’s role.

There is also the fact that one of the first things Manafort did when he got the job with the Trump campaign was to reach out to his pal Oleg Deripaska through an intermediary. He happened to owe the Russian oligarch millions of dollars and wanted to know if Deripaska had seen the news about his new job. When that was affirmed, Manafort asked, “How do we use to get whole?”

None of this is news to those of us who have been paying attention. But in a public court appearance, the Mueller team just destroyed one of Trump’s favorite talking points by affirming that their investigation of Manafort goes well beyond the charges for which he has been indicted. They have been looking into evidence that suggests the president’s former campaign manager was the “back channel” for a “well-developed conspiracy of co-operation” between the Trump campaign and Russian leadership.

I’m sure that tweets from the president correcting the record are being crafted as we speak and that Sean Hannity will lead with a clarification on all of this tonight. But just in case, I won’t be holding my breath.

Quick Takes: Trump Finally Finds Another Lawyer

* As you might have heard, Donald Trump has been having trouble finding people who are willing to serve on his legal team. Someone finally took the bait.

Former New York mayor Rudolph W. Giuliani, a combative former prosecutor and longtime ally of President Trump, told The Washington Post on Thursday that he has joined the president’s legal team dealing with the ongoing special counsel probe.

“I’m doing it because I hope we can negotiate an end to this for the good of the country and because I have high regard for the president and for Bob Mueller,” Giuliani said in an interview.

Let’s check in on what twitter has to say.

* Jonathan Martin took a deep dive into what farmers in the Midwest are saying about Trump’s trade policies.

Here in the largest soybean-producing county in the country, a snowy winter has left North Dakota farmers like Robert Runck with time on their hands before spring planting — time they have spent stewing over how much they stand to lose if President Trump starts a trade war with China.

“If he doesn’t understand what he’s doing to the nation by doing what he’s doing, he’s going to be a one-term president, plain and simple,” said Mr. Runck, a fourth-generation farmer who voted for Mr. Trump. Pausing outside the post office in this town of 2,300, Mr. Runck said the repercussions could be more immediate for Representative Kevin Cramer, a Republican whose bid against Senator Heidi Heitkamp, a Democrat, has been complicated by the proposed tariffs.

“If it doesn’t get resolved by election time, I would imagine it would cost Kevin Cramer some votes,” he said.

Stern warnings are coming from all over the Midwest about the political peril for Republicans in Mr. Trump’s recent course of action, in which the tariffs he slapped on foreign competitors invited retaliatory tariffs on American agriculture. Soybeans are America’s second largest export to China, and that country’s proposed 25 percent duties on the crop would hit hardest in states like Iowa, Kansas and Minnesota — where there are highly competitive House races — as well as Indiana, Missouri and North Dakota, whose Senate contests may determine control of the chamber.

* Adele Stan points out that Sean Hannity is just the tip of the iceberg.

Hannity, who has large audiences for both his nightly cable television program and his daily radio show, is among the president’s most ardent defenders and, more importantly, an on-air attacker of anyone perceived to be a threat to the Trump presidency. For months, Hannity has called for the end to the special counsel investigation of the Trump campaign’s relationship to Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election. He has advanced a debunked conspiracy theory about the death of a staffer at the Democratic National Committee. He echoes Trump’s “fake news” accusations of any reporting that casts the president in an unfavorable light. He has featured Cohen on his television show in segments regarding Trump’s travails without revealing his attorney-client relationship with the fixer-in-chief.

Yes, this is all quite troubling, if not entirely surprising. The real problem, however, is much bigger than whether Hannity is in cahoots with the administration; it’s the total distortion of the media landscape by the big right-wing outlets: Fox News, Sinclair Broadcast Group and Breitbart News, all de facto propaganda arms of the White House. Although the structure of news media in the era of the internet and cable TV lends itself to the silo-ing of audiences with particular political leanings, that alone is not what has caused the distortion. Rather, the leveraging of that phenomenon into an authoritarian disinformation operation is the issue.

* Back when the negotiations over a fix for DACA were making headlines, I pointed out that the Trump administration was demanding legislation that “closed loopholes” and would allow the U.S. to detain and deport more migrant children. Senator Dianne Feinstein noticed and wrote an op-ed defending our current policy.

…Congress has enacted laws to provide basic humanitarian protections to unaccompanied immigrant children. The Trump administration recently reignited its attacks on these protections, with the president going so far as to call laws that protect helpless children “loopholes.”

The administration says these laws prevent immigrant children from being removed from the country, when in fact the goal is to ensure that these children are detained for as little time as possible and only in an appropriate setting, they receive adequate food and water, and that they are given the opportunity to apply for asylum…

These aren’t loopholes, they are basic principles of common human decency. And to demonize and politicize these children is appalling. Contrary to the picture painted by this administration, current policies don’t guarantee a child will be able to remain in the United States. Nor do these policies mean dangerous individuals are being released onto our streets.

The Trump administration’s efforts to repeal protections for children are based on an ignorance of history. The only effect of repeal would be more children held in unsafe conditions at exorbitant costs to the taxpayer.

* Time released their list of the 100 most influential people in 2018. Congratulations to the Parkland students for making the list! I would imagine that they are equally honored to have Barack Obama write the entry about their inclusion.

The Parkland, Fla., students don’t have the kind of lobbyists or big budgets for attack ads that their opponents do. Most of them can’t even vote yet.

But they have the power so often inherent in youth: to see the world anew; to reject the old constraints, outdated conventions and cowardice too often dressed up as wisdom.

The power to insist that America can be better.

Seared by memories of seeing their friends murdered at a place they believed to be safe, these young leaders don’t intimidate easily. They see the NRA and its allies—whether mealymouthed politicians or mendacious commentators peddling conspiracy theories—as mere shills for those who make money selling weapons of war to whoever can pay. They’re as comfortable speaking truth to power as they are dismissive of platitudes and punditry. And they live to mobilize their peers.

Already, they’ve had some success persuading statehouses and some of the biggest gun retailers to change. Now it gets harder. A Republican Congress remains unmoved. NRA scare tactics still sway much of the country. Progress will be slow and frustrating.

But by bearing witness to carnage, by asking tough questions and demanding real answers, the Parkland students are shaking us out of our complacency. The NRA’s favored candidates are starting to fear they might lose. Law-abiding gun owners are starting to speak out. As these young leaders make common cause with African Americans and Latinos—the disproportionate victims of gun violence—and reach voting age, the possibilities of meaningful change will steadily grow.

Our history is defined by the youthful push to make America more just, more compassionate, more equal under the law. This generation—of Parkland, of Dreamers, of Black Lives Matter—embraces that duty. If they make their elders uncomfortable, that’s how it should be. Our kids now show us what we’ve told them America is all about, even if we haven’t always believed it ourselves: that our future isn’t written for us, but by us.

The fact that the same country that elected that man twice went on to elect Donald Trump still boggles my mind.

* Finally, sometimes our memories can be short. When we attempt to explain how we got to the Trump era, we can forget what happened as soon as this country elected our first African American president. The racism and xenophobia didn’t start with Donald Trump. This video is a bit difficult to watch, but it is an important reminder of how we got here.

Inside the Dirty Tricks of Roger Stone

[The excerpt below is from a much longer article I wrote on the 2016 election which is not yet published. This segment is about the relationship between Roger Stone, Randy Credico and Donald Trump. Randy Credico is an interesting character as I hope you’ll discover below. If you know about him at all, it’s probably because Roger Stone revealed to Congress last year that Credico was his conduit to Julian Assange. Credico denies this, but I recommend that you read the following before you make any effort to decide who is telling the truth. This bit is not about Julian Assange or the hacking of the DNC and John Podesta. It’s about how Stone met Trump and how Credico met Stone. And it’s about who influenced these characters and taught them the dark arts of political ratfucking. It’s also about how Credico conned Bernie Sanders supporters in one of the most brazen acts of fraud I’ve ever encountered in presidential politics. Citations are footnoted at the bottom. Enjoy.]

The story of the 2016 election is in many ways a story of curious and unexpected networks that came together to divide and undermine the left. In March 2011, when Donald Trump began floating the idea that he might run for president, he made appearances on Good Morning America and The View where he introduced his theory that President Obama may have faked his birth certificate.[1] For people like myself who grew up in the New York media market, this wasn’t what we expected from Trump. If he had any obvious political leanings at all, they tended toward the Democrats (“I think Bill Clinton is terrific. I think he’s done an amazing job,” Trump told Larry King during a Dec. 27, 1997, appearance on CNN).[2] Of course, in 2000, he had formed an exploratory committee to seek the presidential nomination of the Reform Party, but he spent his time accusing Pat Buchanan of being a “Hitler-lover” rather than winning over the support of people like David Duke.[3] The Trump I knew was more at home on Howard Stern’s radio program rating the hotness of chicks than he was among the social conservatives of the Republican Party or mucking about in the fever swamps of far-right conspiracy programs.

Beneath the surface, though, Trump had connections that help explain how he came to launch a demagogic political career based on the racist and transparently inane theory that Barack Obama was born in Kenya and therefore ineligible to serve as our president.

First among them was Trump’s long relationship with the lawyer Roy Cohn. Cohn is most famous for his role as chief counsel to Sen. Joseph McCarthy. In that role, he led the aggressive and unethical red-baiting Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations until the U.S. Army pushed back and he was forced to resign in August 1954. In private practice Cohn represented prominent New Yorkers like la cosa nostra crime boss Carlo Gambino, Francis Cardinal Spellman and Yankees owner George Steinbrenner, but was frequently at odds with the law. Over the years, he won four separate acquittals on charges varying from conspiracy, securities fraud, bribery, and obstruction of justice before finally being disbarred in 1986 as he was dying of HIV. [4] What Cohn learned from McCarthy was the value of being dramatic and the utility of exaggerated claims and accusations. He passed these lessons along to Donald Trump.

According to Trump, he first met Roy Cohn in a members-only Midtown establishment called Le Club. It was 1973, and the government was accusing the Trumps of discriminatory housing practices. He asked Cohn, “The government has just filed suit against our company saying that we discriminated against blacks. What do you think I should do?” Cohn advised him to “Tell them to go to hell and fight the thing in court and let them prove you discriminated.”

The Trumps retained Cohn to represent them and Donald became his student. According to author Sam Roberts, it was from Cohn that Trump learned his now familiar three-part strategy for handling litigation which he has now transferred to political combat: 1. Never settle, never surrender. 2. Counter-attack, counter-sue immediately. 3. No matter what happens, no matter how deeply into the muck you get, claim victory and never admit defeat.[5]

In 1979, Roger Stone was responsible for running Ronald Reagan’s campaign for president in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut. He’d gained a reputation for political dirty tricks from his time working with Chuck ‘Tex’ Colson as a volunteer at Nixon’s Committee to Re-Elect the President. Perhaps it was his brush with the Watergate scandal that gave him the credentials to gain an audience with Cohn. Stone knew Cohn was close with Trump and he sought him out to win an introduction.

When Stone arrived at Cohn’s townhouse, he discovered him in his bathrobe meeting with Anthony ‘Fat Tony’ Salerno of the Genovese crime family. In 1988, Salerno was convicted for allocating contracts and obtaining payoffs in the concrete construction of 16 Manhattan buildings, including Trump Plaza.[6] After some chit-chat, Cohn agreed to introduce Stone to Trump. Later on, Stone and Cohn teamed up rather successfully to gather dirt on Walter Mondale’s running mate Geraldine Ferraro. In 1986, Stone listed Cohn along with Richard Nixon and the dethroned Nazi-sympathizing Duke of Windsor as his biggest idols.[7]

According to Stone, at their initial meeting, Donald sent him to his father Fred in Coney Island where a deal was struck. “True to his word, I got $200,000. The checks came in $1,000 denominations, the maximum donation you could give. All of these checks were written to ‘Reagan For President.’ It was not illegal—it was bundling. Check trading.”

Stone was not initially impressed with Donald Trump, at least if Christine Seymour can be believed. Seymour was a graduate of St. Lawrence University who landed a job with Roy Cohn as a switchboard operator. With Cohn’s blessing, she had the privilege and responsibility of eavesdropping on and recording calls from clients like Fat Tony Salerno as well as luminaries like Gloria Vanderbilt and First Lady Nancy Reagan. Seymour wrote in her notebooks “Roger did not like Donald Trump or his new house, told me they were losers, but if Roy used them, he would, too.”[8]

Nonetheless, the relationship between Stone and Trump grew. In 1987, Stone first urged Trump to run for president. But it was in 2000 when he used Trump in a bit of jujitsu to sabotage the Reform Party and smooth the way for the election of George W. Bush. As detailed in the Netflix documentary Get Me Roger Stone, this was accomplished by first convincing Pat Buchanan to run for the nomination before enlisting Trump to savage him from the left.[9]

Stone says that Trump told him he would run for president in 2016 on New Year’s Day 2013. And when Trump made his formal announcement in Trump Tower in 2015, Stone was enlisted to serve as a top adviser. His formal role with the campaign didn’t last long, however, due to disagreements with Corey Lewandowski.[10] From that point forward, Stone would do his work for Trump where is he is most comfortable, in the shadows.

If there was an alter-ego to Roy Cohn, it might have been William Kunstler. Cohn got his position with Senator McCarthy on the recommendation of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover who hated Martin Luther King Jr. so fervently that he tried to blackmail him into committing suicide. Kunstler represented King as an attorney during his fight to desegregate Georgia.[11] He also represented the victims of COINTELPRO on the countercultural left, including Stokely Carmichael and the infamous Seattle Seven. Contrarian by nature, Kunstler seemed to get a kick out of defending the least defensible and most hated criminal suspects. He defended Colin Ferguson, the Long Island railroad shooter. He defended suspects in the 1993 World Trade Center bombing. While Cohn was known for representing the Gambino and Genovese crime families, Kunstler went to court on behalf of the competing Bananno crime family. Politically, Kuntsler was far to the left, and he was best known for his opposition to racism, injustice and the draconian Rockefeller drug laws of New York state.

Randy Credico met William Kuntsler when his then girlfriend Joey Heatherton of The Happy Hooker Goes to Washington fame ran into legal problems. A stand-up comedian who once appeared on The Tonight Show and displeased Johnny Carson by comparing UN ambassador Jeanne Kirkpatrick to Eva Braun, Credico was attracted to the iconoclastic lawyer and came under his sway.[12][13] In particular, he adopted Kuntsler’s anti-drug war ideology as his own, and after Kuntsler died Credico headed the William Moses Kunstler Fund for Racial Justice for 12 years. He stepped down to run a quixotic primary campaign against incumbent and now Senate Minority Leader, Chuck Schumer. He got 0.6 percent of the vote. When he ran for mayor against Bill de Blasio in 2013 on the Tax Wall Street ballot line, he did worse, earning a meager 654 votes.[14]

He was somewhat more successful as an activist against our nation’s drug laws than he was as a politician. He was instrumental, for example, in bringing national media attention to the Tulia, Texas scandal in which 10 percent of the black population of the town was arrested on drug charges solely on the testimony of a single undercover officer.

Credico used a perch at the historically pacifist and far-left WBAI radio station in New York to promote his ideas, among which was the strong belief that Bill Clinton was a monster for enacting The Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994. Another belief of his was that the surveillance state has grown far too powerful and that whistleblowers like Chelsea Manning, Edward Snowden, and Julian Assange are heroes.

Randy Credico met Roger Stone while both were working on the 2002 New York gubernatorial campaign of Tom Golisano.[15] Golisano is the founder of Paychex, a payroll and human resources business, and a former co-owner of the Buffalo Sabres who is well known for his philanthropy for people with disabilities. In 2017, the Forbes 400 listed him as the 264th wealthiest person in America. He founded the Independence Party of New York and 2002 was his third and final run for governor. Stone was his campaign manager and his motivation was less to help Gilasano than it was to exact revenge on sitting Governor George Pataki. As Greg Sargent reported for The Observer at the time, Stone was severely embarrassed and “enraged by the fact that a state commission controlled by the Governor ruled that he had set up an unlawful lobbying front group for Donald Trump.”[16]

Credico was presumably no fan of George Pataki, but his interest in the campaign had nothing to do with Donald Trump. He and Stone bonded over their mutual loathing of the Rockefeller drug laws. An October 14, 2002 piece in the New York Times explained how Stone was using Gilasano’s money not only to savage Pataki but to push for repeal.

Staking out a far more sweeping position on the Rockefeller drug laws than either of his opponents in the race for governor, Tom Golisano will call today for the laws’ repeal, his campaign aides said.

Mr. Golisano, the Independence Party candidate, has said as much before, with little fanfare. But now, he will back up his statement by broadcasting commercials that accuse Gov. George E. Pataki of offering a Rockefeller plan that is ”not real reform.”

Campaign aides would not say exactly how much Mr. Golisano, who has already spent nearly $40 million on his bid for the governorship, will spend on the new ad campaign. But, Roger Stone, Mr. Golisano’s campaign adviser, said, ”Everyone will know his position by the end of the week.”

”Tom Golisano is the most conservative candidate in this race, and he is acknowledging that the Rockefeller laws are harsh, ineffective and expensive,” Mr. Stone said, noting that more than $700 million is spent yearly to incarcerate drug offenders. ”We are hopeful that his position will give others now the cover they need to get these laws repealed.”[17]

On May 26, 2015, Bernie Sanders officially announced his candidacy for president at Waterfront Park in Burlington, Vermont. After watching Sanders campaign for a while, Randy Credico was unimpressed. In one Facebook post on July 9, he compared Sanders unfavorably to Giacomo Matteoti, “The Italians had a real socialist, a man willing to fight and give up his life against the onset of fascism. We have Bernie Sanders, a man willing to stand up in support of U.S. imperialism.” In another entry the same day, he posted a picture of a Jim Crow era sign reading “We serve white’s only, no Spanish or Mexicans” alongside the words: “Sign outside Bernie Sanders rally.” In a third post, he said he had checked out the crowd at a Sanders rally and it was “whiter than the bleachers at Fenway Park.” Finally, also on the ninth, Credico approvingly linked to an article by Glen Ford of the Black Agenda Report headlined: Rand Paul Makes More Sense than the Democrats’ “Left” Champion.

In the introduction to the piece, Ford wrote:

The whole world knows that the United States and its closest allies created the ISIS-al Qaida juggernaut in Syria, Iraq, Libya and proliferating points elsewhere in the Muslim world. Russian President Vladimir Putin knows it, and has now begun to denounce the crime against civilization on the world stage. Rand Paul knows it, and has made the fact central to his campaign for the U.S. presidency.

Muammar Gaddafi prophesized correctly that NATO’s transformation into a jihadist air force would turn Libya into “another Somalia” – a vortex of Salafist chaos that would destabilize the entire region. “We came, we saw, he died,” cackled Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, who yearns to bring the same ghoulish statecraft to the Oval Office in 2017. Does any decent person actually consider this banshee a “lesser evil”?

Bernie Sanders does. The Vermont senator promises to endorse Clinton as soon as he drops out of the presidential race – thus nullifying whatever “message” he plans to deliver during the Democratic primary process.[18]

Credico’s opinion of Sanders did not improve throughout the fall of 2015. On September 17th he posted on Facebook that socialist activists were “drugged out” on “Bernie Kool-Aid” that was no different from what Barack Obama had been offering in his campaigns. On October 4th, he made a post with pictures of Bernie Sanders and Eugene Debs, writing, “The man on top (Debs) is a socialist…the man on the bottom is a career political hack posing as one.” On October 5, in response to Sanders supporting air strikes in Syria (but not a no-fly zone), Credico called him a “career hack snake.”

Credico’s estimation of Bernie Sanders did not improve over the winter holidays. On February 10, the day after Sanders enjoyed his first victory in the New Hampshire primary, Credico tweeted “Hate to say it but ‘political revolution’ is no more than a repackaged version of ‘Yes, We Can.’”[19]

Sanders success in New Hampshire started a roller-coaster ride and an extended primary season. While Sanders vastly exceeded expectations, by the time the April 19 New York primary rolled around he was in a win-or-go-home situation.

For Sanders’ supporters, the stakes couldn’t have been higher. As part of the get out the vote effort “a super 36 Hour Comedy and Music marathon” was announced on the campaign website. Running from April 17 up until poll closing on the 19, the event, held at the Commons Café in Brooklyn, featured a list of minor celebrities, stand-up comics and local musical artists.

Randy Credico organized the event at Common Café that ran from April 17 to April 19, serving as the emcee and acting for all the world like the biggest booster of Bernie Sanders in the borough of Brooklyn. His infatuation didn’t last long.

On May 10, Roger Stone appeared on former Arizona congressman J.D. Hayworth’s NewsMax Prime television program and revealed that Randy Credico was starting a Sanders Supporters for Trump group.[20]

Looking back with the benefit of hindsight, Stone was revealing something of considerable importance. Randy Credico, who had initially considered Bernie Sanders an inadequate socialist and an apologist for U.S. imperialism, was now on the Trump train. How many of the people who traipsed through the Common Café three weeks earlier suspected that the emcee would soon be working to help Trump become the president? They never suspected any such thing because they had no idea that Credico and Stone were friends with a history of ratfucking their political opponents.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Barack_Obama_citizenship_conspiracy_theories#Donald_Trump

[2] http://theweek.com/articles/637675/donald-trumps-decadeslong-obsession-being-president

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Donald_Trump_presidential_campaign,_2000

[4] https://www.senate.gov/artandhistory/history/resources/pdf/Volume5.pdf

[5] https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/06/donald-trump-roy-cohn-relationship

[6] http://www.nytimes.com/1992/07/29/us/anthony-fat-tony-salerno-80-a-top-crime-boss-dies-in-prison.html

[7] https://www.washingtonpost.com/archive/lifestyle/1986/06/16/the-rise-and-gall-of-roger-stone/d8ce308b-7055-4666-860e-378833f46e17/?utm_term=.24811409137c

[8] https://www.newyorker.com/news/news-desk/eavesdropping-on-roy-cohn-and-donald-trump?mbid=social_facebook_aud_dev_kw_paid-eavesdropping-on-roy-cohn-and-donald-trump&kwp_0=602775&kwp_4=2127895&kwp_1=888961

[9] https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/voices/2017/05/21/roger-stone-donald-trump-documentary/101909014/

[10] https://www.usnews.com/news/national-news/articles/2017-02-03/roger-stone-trump-told-me-hed-run-on-new-years-day-2013

[11] http://www.nytimes.com/1995/09/05/obituaries/william-kunstler-76-dies-lawyer-for-social-outcasts.html

[12] https://cityroom.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/11/16/drug-activist-leaves-kunstler-fund-for-senate-bid/

[13] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Randy_Credico

[14] http://www.nytimes.com/projects/elections/2013/general/nyc-mayor/map.html

[15] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tom_Golisano

[16] http://observer.com/2002/11/roger-stones-the-race/

[17] http://www.nytimes.com/2002/10/14/nyregion/race-for-governor-drug-laws-golisano-take-airwaves-condemn-rockefeller-laws.html

[18] https://www.blackagendareport.com/rand_paul_makes_more_sense_than_dems_left_champion

[19] https://storify.com/italkyoubored/theory-that-roger-stone-s-go-between-for-wikileaks

[20] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=loq6JDazthw#t=5m09s