The Sift Here’s what we’re Sifting today

Trump commutes supporter’s sentence

by Lynde Langdon
Posted 7/10/20, 10:31 pm

Roger Stone, a longtime associate of President Donald Trump, will not have to serve 40 months in prison for lying to Congress. A jury convicted him of trying to discover WikiLeaks’ plans to release stolen emails damaging to Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton during the 2016 presidential campaign and then attempting to cover it up. He was due to report to prison by Tuesday. White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany said Stone was a “victim of the Russia hoax.”

What will Stone do now? He told The Associated Press the president called him earlier on Friday to inform him of the commutation, which will keep him out of prison but does not erase his conviction as a pardon would. “I am going to work as hard as I can to make sure that Mike Flynn gets final justice,” Stone said, referring to Trump’s former national security adviser who was charged with lying to federal agents.

Dig deeper: Read reporting by Harvest Prude about developments in Stone’s and Flynn’s cases.


Read more from The Sift Sign up for The Sift email
Lynde Langdon

Lynde is a WORLD Digital’s managing editor and reports on popular and fine arts. She lives in Wichita, Kan., with her husband and two daughters. Follow Lynde on Twitter @lmlangdon.

Read more from this writer

Comments

You must be a WORLD Member and logged in to the website to comment.
  • AlanE
    Posted: Sat, 07/11/2020 11:21 am

    "Drain the swamp," he said. 

  •  Xion's picture
    Xion
    Posted: Sat, 07/11/2020 05:57 pm

    As Christians, how do we evaluate justice?  What do we call it when the courts are wrong?  Jesus' trial was unjust, and we take his side against a corrupt state.  God's justice often doesn't align with man's court system, yet God still endorses it (Rom 13).  

    Roger Stone lied to Congress in the investigation of a crime that never happened.  Michael Flynn pleaded guilty to lying, even though he did not, according to the FBI who entrapped him. The investigation itself was based on a long list of illegal activity, such as lying to the FISA court using a false dossier, leaking to the press and so on.  A long list of Democrats also lied to Congress in the same investigation, yet only Republicans are prosecuted.  In a corrupt system, what does it mean to stand for justice?

  • DEBI
    Posted: Sun, 07/12/2020 10:43 am

    Xion, Thank you for that excellent comment !  It helped me to sort out my mind about all of this stuff !

  • not silent
    Posted: Mon, 07/13/2020 10:55 am

    How do we evaluate justice?  We go to God's Word.  If Mr. Stone lied to Congress, even if it was about a crime that never happened, he still lied. I don't know if he actually swore on a Bible; but he would have had to affirm that he intended to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth or face the penalty for perjury.  If there are a bunch of Democrats who also lied, whether or not they are being held accountable, they still lied. 

    Don't God's commandments apply even in a corrupt system?  (Isn't EVERY human system corrupt?) If we are going to start justifying breaking the law and saying that it's okay for us because the system has become so corrupt we can't trust our Congress or our legal process, how can we complain if protestors want to "defund police" and "burn it all down" because THEY believe the whole system is unjust? (I do not agree with defunding police or "burning it all down" because I don't think that is the best way to address the very real injustices in law enforcement.  AND I don't think lying under oath will help address any irregularities in a Congressional hearing.) 

    Shouldn't we, as Christians, still care about justice and truth, even if the system is corrupt, even if the people being charged are "on our side," and even if others are not being held accountable?  Don't God's commandments apply to "our side" even if they aren't being applied by people on the other side? 

    I agree that our system is corrupt; but we contribute to that corruption when we justify wrongdoing by those we view as "on our side."  It's one thing to point out corruption by others; it's quite another to justify our OWN corruption. 

  • OldMike
    Posted: Mon, 07/13/2020 07:50 pm

    Do you believe lying is always wrong, and is based on Biblical teachings, like the Ninth Commandment?  I believe you are reading something into Scripture that isn't there. 
     

    Read about Rahab, a prostitute in Jericho who encountered some Jewish spies. (Joshua 2). And read about the Jewish midwives in Egypt. (Exodus 1)

     

    These are two examples of people who told bald-faced lies to those in authority and were honored by the Lord for it. 
     

    No, I don't think "it is always wrong to lie" is Scriptural.  "You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor" is a very specific command against one very specific form of lying.

  • OldMike
    Posted: Mon, 07/13/2020 08:23 pm

    By the way, I believe the falsehood that "the Bible says lying is wrong" is used by unbelievers as a weapon against Christians. When an unbeliever hears a Christian lie, the first accusation is that we are hypocrites "because you told a lie even though your religion says lying is wrong."  
     

    Note that unbelievers often do not believe their own lies are wrong--they can find a world of justifications for their own deceptions, fibs, white lies, or even outright frauds and malicious slander. But not ours--unbelievers say WE must ALWAYS tell the 100% unbounded unvarnished un-nuanced truth, or we are hypocrites. 

  • not silent
    Posted: Mon, 07/13/2020 08:01 pm

    I think this question was aimed at me, so I'll try to answer it.  Do I believe that lying is ALWAYS wrong?  No. The example of Rahab is a great example. The other classic example would be lying to Nazi's to protect Jewish people in hiding.    Do I believe lying under oath to Congress in this particular situation was wrong?  Yes.  If I have to explain why, the situation is hopeless and we have already lost. 

  • OldMike
    Posted: Tue, 07/14/2020 12:48 am

    A lot of shades of gray. We mostly would agree on what would happen if Nazis uncovered and arrested Jews and their protectors.  So the violence the Nazis would visit on the Jews and their protectors is a justifiable reason for lying?

    So Roger Stone is arrested, tried, and sentenced to prison by angry, vindictive, and possibly untruthful opponents of President Trump specifically and conservatives in general. Stone is 67 years old, a member of a demographic proven to be more susceptible to extremely serious covid infections.  At this time there are a lot of valid fears of Covid-19 spreading in prisons, and many felons are being released because of those fears. 
     

    It almost looks like people angry at President Trump have decided to be extra harsh to an elderly man because he is a Trump supporter. It might even be possible a lot of lies were told in order to convict Stone of lying. 
     

    I don't believe we have lost. Not at all. 

  • OldMike
    Posted: Tue, 07/14/2020 12:45 am

    I think we should also take a little closer look at what Roger Stone was originally accused of:  "two associates of Stone have said he collaborated with Wikileaks founder Julian Assange during the 2016 presidential campaign to discredit Hillary Clinton."  That plus most of what follows is from the Wikipedia entry entitled "Roger Stone."

    First, what Julian Assange is said to have done is conspire with US Army Pvt. Bradley Manning to steal classified government documents. At one point those documents were alleged to have included emails to and from Hillary Clinton and others, dealing with matters of her 2016 campaign for President. It is that alleged portion of the entire WikiLeaks documents stash that Roger Stone was interested in. Apparently there was never any release of ANY documents (or information about documents) from Assange/WikiLeaks to Stone. U.S. intelligence later determined the email messages concerning Hillary Clinton's campaign were stolen by hackers working for the Russian government, not by Pvt. Manning/Julian Assange. 
     

    [Since this was originally posted, the following paragraph has been expanded for clarification.]

    So boiling it down, what Stone was convicted of was "witness tampering, obstructing an official proceeding, and five counts of making false statements.  Stone was convicted on all seven felony counts in November 2019 and was sentenced to 40 months in prison."  Stone committed these crimes while being investigated for seeking a way to discredit Hillary Clinton during her 2016 run for President.  Note there are no convictions for actually having done anything to harm the Clinton campaign, only, apparently, for lying when he was asked if he tried to harm the Clinton campaign.  

    You know the saying, it takes a thief to catch a thief?  In this instance, I think Roger Stone, well known for political trickery in several political campaigns, tried to expose the deceptions of another master trickster who was running for President, and that greatly offended all of the Trump haters in our government.  I am unable to view that as a sin, or as wrong. Of course, that's only one man's opinion. 

  • not silent
    Posted: Tue, 07/14/2020 09:08 am

    I suppose we could debate what kinds of lying are acceptable. But I think the First Commandment is pretty clear.  When I said we had already lost, I was talking about the First Commandment.

  • NEWS2ME
    Posted: Tue, 07/14/2020 05:47 pm

    I think Stone thought it was all a big joke. And it was. But with the Dems running the show with the backing of the FBI and the biased media, it was made into a mess.

    Obama should be up for treason. And all the people behind the so called Russian scam. As well as the so called impeachment.

    They did nothing to Hillary and anyone helping her bleach her computer. They didn't go under cover of darkness to take her files and computers with the press watching. Did she even get scolded? She didn't really mean to do anything wrong? Hillary? 

    Obama ran guns thru Mexico and Bengazi. He gave money to the enemy. They used to execute traitors. 

    So Stone gets more years than a murderer because Pelosi's minions feel he was laughing at them? What a great bunch. Why do people vote for them?

  • OldMike
    Posted: Tue, 07/14/2020 08:09 pm

    not silent, I'm trying to understand what you are saying, but you may have to just spell it out for me.  Maybe I'm sleep deprived, or dementia is setting in, but please give me a little more help:

    In an earlier post you said, "Do I believe lying under oath to Congress in this particular situation was wrong?  Yes.  If I have to explain why, the situation is hopeless and we have already lost."  
     

    Then you said, "When I said we had already lost, I was talking about the First Commandment."

    OK, so, 1) Roger Stone lied to Congress and/or investigators about something.  And 2). If I don't understand why that is wrong, I have put other gods before The Lord of Creation.
     

    ?  Really needing some help here.  Thanks. 

  • not silent
    Posted: Wed, 07/15/2020 01:11 am

    To Old Mike, your question is a fair one.  However, I'm out of my depth if I have to explain to Christians why it's wrong to lie under oath to Congress and engage in witness tampering.  Quite honestly, this fills me with despair. 

    The reason I invoked the First Commandment is because all the others come from loving God with our heart soul, mind and strength and because it's about GOD and what HE thinks, not what I think. Of course, I'm not God and I can't see in your heart; and you are not ultimately accountable to me.  I don't tend to like it very much when others try to tell me God's will, but I honestly thought this particular case was pretty clear. Sorry, I guess I was wrong.  At any rate, if your conscience is clear before God, it doesn't matter what I think. 

ADVERTISEMENT