'Such despicable behavior': Internet destroys Roger Stone's pathetic excuses for going after a federal judge
On Monday, President Donald Trump's former adviser Roger Stone found himself in hot water after posting an apparent threat on Instagram against the federal judge in his case, who just last week put a partial gag order on his lawyers.
The post, which attacked Judge Amy Berman Jackson as "an Obama appointed Judge who dismissed the Benghazi charges again [sic] Hillary Clinton and incarcerated Paul Manafort prior to his conviction for any crime," displayed her face next to what seemed to be crosshairs, and the image seemed to have been lifted from a conspiracy theory site called Galactic Central.
After sharp blowback, Stone deleted the post, re-uploaded it with a cropped version of the photograph that didn't include the crosshairs, and then deleted that post too. He said that "Any inference that this in someway threatens the judge is false," and blamed the whole thing on "one of the people who works for me."
Social media, however, was not impressed. Stone faced a wave of furious criticism for his behavior:
Such despicable behavior is enabled and catalysts by Donald Trump’s rhetoric every day. I don’t care what side you… https://t.co/FuWShlat2U— Neal Katyal (@Neal Katyal) 1550520748
Let’s be real clear: Roger Stone just attacked the judge presiding over his case. No conservative should be saying this is OK. None.— Bradley P. Moss (@Bradley P. Moss) 1550518182
Interview from 2/13 where I said Roger Stone needed a gag order and house arrest immediately because otherwise he'd… https://t.co/BlzNba9rTH— Sarah Kendzior (@Sarah Kendzior) 1550522541
One theory was that Stone was not actually serious about issuing a threat, but was trying to provoke Jackson in order to "bias" her against him and force her to recuse herself from the case — a legal strategy that, to put it mildly, does not work:
By the way, because it looks like it will come up again thanks to Roger Stone: no, you can't get a new federal jud… https://t.co/5gPPbPXu9r— Popehat (@Popehat) 1550519018
Other people noted that there could be serious consequences for Stone's actions, from having his bail revoked to new criminal charges:
I'm sure Roger Stone's lawyers are going to have a wonderful time at tomorrow's bail hearing. https://t.co/WQfSluCK37— Grant Stern is boosted! (@Grant Stern is boosted!) 1550520758
18 USC § 115: Whoever "threatens to assault, kidnap, or murder, a ... [US] judge ... with intent to impede, intimid… https://t.co/Ap015Jw7J4— Ted Lieu (@Ted Lieu) 1550522996
Soon it’ll be I “miss natural sunlight.” https://t.co/usfNg6H3m1— George Conway🌻 (@George Conway🌻) 1550527107