Jim Crawford: Trump’s ‘Make the Steal Campaign’

Published 12:00 am Saturday, August 19, 2023

Donald Trump planned well in advance to remain in office after the 2020 election should he lose. 

Roger Stone, Trump’s 30-year friend and advisor, outlined the plan in absolute precision well before Trump’s 2020 election loss.

 Christoffer Guldbrandsen, A Danish filmmaker, was doing a two-year project about Stone that became the documentary, “A Storm Foretold.” Stone granted the filmmaker access throughout the period, and on July 9, 2020, Guldbrandsen recorded Stone on video talking about the upcoming election. 

Email newsletter signup

Stone said it’s “Going to be really nasty,” and “The election will not be normal.” Don Lemon, on CNN, broadcast the video for the first time on Sept. 27, 2020.

Stone went on to say in the video that the Trump campaign would not accept the results should they lose.

He promised the Trump campaign would put up its own electors and could arrest the certified electors as they appeared to validate the election, replacing them with the false electors claiming election fraud. 

Stone argued “any electoral body” can appoint electors simply by claiming election fraud, evidence, or lack of evidence, non-withstanding.

Again, Stone argued in the video, that the election would be won in the courts. In a separate video by the filmmaker, Stone said they, the Trump campaign, should just skip the voting, go straight to the violence, and then win in the courts.

 On Dec. 27, 2020, Stone met with Trump at Trump’s golf course in West Palm Beach. The following day Stone wrote on social media “that he had advised Trump on ‘exactly how’” he could remain in power and prosecute Democrats for stealing the election. The post was erased on Dec. 28.” (Washington Post, March 24, 2022.)

Shortly after this date, the Trump team re-started Stone’s “Stop the Steal” campaign, initially planned for 2016. At the time, Stone said, “We are gonna raise money from Stop the Steal-it will be like rolling off a log.”

Stone’s final advice to Trump was to make “personal contact” with lawmakers to bring them on board with the plan to stay in office after losing the election. Trump made many personal contacts, including the famous call to the Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, asking him to “find” enough votes to overturn the Georgia election results.

As Stone advised, Trump did deny the election, even before the votes were counted. Trump did go to the courts, expecting judges he appointed to help his cause. They did not. Trump did use the fake electors’ scheme, but Vice President Mike Pence refused to recognize the false electors before Congress, killing that attempt.

Trump also went the violence route, bringing his armed supporters to Washington, D.C.  on the day of the election certification. They achieved disgracing the nation, but failed to stop the certification.

 That day, Jan. 6, 2021, Roger Stone was running from his suite at the Willard Hotel in D.C., hurrying out of town, fearing the incoming attorney general, Merrick Garland, would prosecute him. 

Stone lobbied Trump’s team for pardons for himself, Trump’s congressional allies and the America First Movement. Stone’s personal bodyguards that day were members of the Proud Boys, whose leader was later convicted of seditious conspiracy.

Roger Stone stands as evidence that Donald Trump had knowledge and intent to overthrow the free and fair election of 2020. This detailed plan is why Trump is under federal indictment for crimes committed as fraud against the American people whose votes he intended to cast aside.

 Other than our civil war, there has been no greater act against the American people by an American than this betrayal of our nation.

Jim Crawford is a retired educator and political enthusiast living here in the Tri-State.