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Commuting Stone Sentence Is a Crime Against Democracy and the Rule of Law

Statement of Robert Weissman, President, Public Citizen

Note: President Donald Trump commuted the sentence of his longtime friend Roger Stone on seven felony crimes on Friday, just days before Stone was to report to a federal prison to serve a 40-month term.

Roger Stone is not “colorful.” He is a criminal. His false statements, obstruction of a congressional inquiry and witness tampering constituted a crime against democracy. Donald Trump understood it as exactly that: an effort to protect him from democratic accountability. That’s why Trump commuted his sentence, and it’s why that commutation is itself an offense against democracy and the rule of law.