House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) issued a strong rebuke of President Donald Trump following the arrest of his longtime adviser Roger Stone on Friday, questioning the legitimacy of the 2016 election and Trump’s ties to Russia.
“The indictment of Roger Stone makes clear that there was a deliberate, coordinated attempt by top Trump campaign officials to influence the 2016 election and subvert the will of the American people,” Pelosi said in a statement released Friday evening.
“In the face of 37 indictments, the President’s continued actions to undermine the Special Counsel investigation raise the questions: what does Putin have on the President, politically, personally or financially? Why has the Trump Administration continued to discuss pulling the U.S. out of NATO, which would be a massive victory for Putin?”
The statement came late Friday, just hours after Trump agreed to temporarily reopen the government without additional funding for his border wall.
Prior to Friday afternoon, Republicans refused to pass a spending bill that didn’t include $5.7 billion for a U.S.-Mexico border wall, forcing the government to partially close for over a month and leaving thousands of federal workers without pay. But Pelosi refused to take the president up on any of his offers while keeping her caucus in line, and eventually secured a deal to reopen the government for three weeks.
News of Stone’s arrest came Friday morning, in the midst of the political chaos created by the ongoing shutdown as it became clear that Congress was inching toward a potential deal. For more than a month, Republican lawmakers resisted breaking from the president on funding for a border wall, which was one of Trump’s central campaign promises.
Returning attention to Stone’s indictment Friday evening, Pelosi said the House will continue to flex its constitutional oversight authority and protect the special counsel investigation run by Robert Mueller from any White House interference.
If Roger Stone was indicted for lying to Congress, what about the lying done by Comey, Brennan, Clapper, Lisa Page & lover, Baker and soooo many others? What about Hillary to FBI and her 33,000 deleted Emails? What about Lisa & Peter’s deleted texts & Wiener’s laptop? Much more!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 26, 2019
Meanwhile, Trump took to Twitter to falsely equate Stone’s indictment to Hillary Clinton’s email controversy. (Clinton used a private email server to conduct government business while she was secretary of state — similar to how Trump’s daughter has also her own private email account.) Stone, who was an adviser on the president campaign, is the sixth Trump associate to be charged in the Mueller probe.
Pelosi’s approval rating is currently at the highest point that it’s been in a decade, according to pollsters from CBS News and Gallup. Some observers have argued that fiercely opposing Trump has made Pelosi more popular.