Roger Stone Demanded Lists from Rick Gates at Least Nine Times During the 2016 Election

For a whole slew of reasons, I want to point out a detail in an exhibit released in Roger Stone’s trial: He asked for “lists” — once explicitly described as donor lists, but described as voter registration lists by Stone’s attorney, Bruce Rogow, at trial — from Rick Gates at least nine times:

4/30/16, 2:37:22 PM [Stone to Gates]: Obtain the donor list- I Need it soon to effect [sic] California!!

5/11/16, 7:16:14 AM [Stone to Gates]: Get the list. I don’t care about anything else.

5/11/16, 1:08:05 PM [Stone to Gates]: Get the list !!!!!!!

5/13/16, 1:52:51 AM [Stone to Gates]: Tried – corey trying desperately to tie me to New PAC and Trump seems to be unaware that this PA

5/13/16, 1:15:31 AM [Gates to Stone]: New updates.

5/13/16, 1:32:00 PM [Stone to Gates]: Can make sure Manafort makes sure Trump knows about Sovereignty PAC-???

5/15/16, 2:36:32 PM [Gates to Stone]: Did you see the positive press o. AS PAC? Hope it holds.

5/17/16, 3:54:53 PM [Stone to Gates]: Get the list.

5/17/16, 7:19:20 PM[Stone to Gates]: Get the list – “u need to reconcile against FEC report” crucial

6/21/16, 3:54:40 PM [Stone to Gates]: Lists Friday ??? please

7/2/16, 5:59:17 PM [Stone to Gates]: Lists? You said last weds

9/21/16, 10:30:25 PM [Stone to Gates]: Please get me lists – please.

9/26/16, 8:30:22 PM [Stone to Gates]: Lists????

9/28/16, 1:43:14 AM [Stone to Gates]: Are u going to send me the lists in time for me to use? do me no good after the election

10/19/16, 5:00:14 PM [Stone to Gates]: Lists…..pls

It’s not entirely clear why they were included at trial. The government had talked about introducing 404b information showing Stone illegally coordinating with the campaign, but there was more focus, on that point, on Stone’s discussions with Steve Bannon about obtaining funding from Rebekah Mercer while the latter was campaign manager.

Perhaps the defense wanted to include these exchanges as proof that Stone’s conversations with Gates focused more often on lists than on WikiLeaks. In his cross examination of Gates, Rogow got Trump’s former Deputy Campaign Manager to confirm that Stone, “continually asked questions about voter registration lists.”

Q. Mr. Stone’s role in the campaign dealt with voter registration lists, primarily, didn’t it?

A. I didn’t know what Mr. Stone was responsible for prior to when I arrived. When I arrived, Mr. Stone had already left the campaign.

Q. Did Mr. Stone continually ask questions about voter registration lists?

A. He did.

To be clear: I’m completely agnostic what Stone’s requests were about. But there are a slew of possibilities.

One reason I raise it — given a Campaign Legal Center complaint to the FEC, alleging that Trump laundered $170 million in campaign funding through Brad Parscale’s firms and news today of Parscale’s attempt at self-harm yesterday — pertains to some comments that Paul Manafort made in a September 27, 2016 interview:

Stone had a PAC that was not well funded and he wanted Manafort to designate it as the favored PAC for the campaign, but Manafort did not want to. Lewandowski also had a PAC and wanted the same thing, and Manafort did not want to deal with internal politics related to their PACs. He thought it was a good idea to have a designated PAC, he just did not want it to be either Stone’s or Lewandowski’s.


Manafort was not sure how Stone made his money. Manafort knew Stone wrote books and gave speeches and did some consulting. Manafort knew Stone was working on a book about the Trump campaign and consulted with different candidates and on various referenda. Manafort did not know Stone’s client base. Manafort was not familiar with the company Citroen.

Manafort’s comments are positively hilarious. He presents this as a battle between Stone and Corey Lewandowski over who could make the most profit off of illegally coordinating with the campaign. That battle was real, and cut throat.

But at the time Stone and Lewandowski were fighting that out, Manafort’s allies had their own PAC that prosecutors at least suspected that Manafort used as a kick back system to get paid. Manafort didn’t want anyone else to be the official illegally coordinating campaign, presumably, because he wanted his PAC to have that role. And at the time Manafort made this comment in September 2018, he was pretty aggressively trying to hide how his own PAC worked.

The investigation into Manafort’s PAC has been closed, whether because Bill Barr shut it down or prosecutors gave up trying to untangle it.

But the CLC complaint into Trump’s current campaign alleges that one of Parscale’s firms, American Made Media Holding Corporation, serves as a pass through for campaign vendor services that are therefore improperly shielded from campaign finance reporting.

Approximately one month after AMMC’s formation, the Trump campaign began reporting sizable payments to AMMC, and AMMC soon became the Trump campaign’s largest vendor. Since 2019, the Trump campaign has reported paying $106 million to AMMC for an array of general purposes, including placed media, consulting, online advertising, SMS advertising, and more; the Trump Make America Great Again Committee has reported over $61 million in payments to AMMC, largely for online advertising.

Available evidence indicates that AMMC is not directly providing those services to the Trump campaign, but instead is acting as a “clearinghouse”10 that disburses Trump campaign funds to other vendors, “effectively shielding the identities of the underlying contractors being paid for Trump campaign work.”11 In several instances, Trump campaign officials and public reports have described other firms as major contractors providing services to the Trump campaign, yet those contractors’ names do not appear on the Trump campaign’s reports filed with the Commission; instead, it appears that the Trump campaign reports payments to AMMC, which then passes on the funds to the intended payees.

For example, Trump campaign officials have spoken publicly about directing and managing the development of a mobile app produced by the software company Phunware, yet the Trump campaign has not reported direct payments to the company. Other public records suggest that the Trump campaign is contracting with Realtime Media and Opn Sesame— firms headed by the Trump campaign’s digital director, Gary Coby12—yet neither firm has appeared on the campaign’s reports filed with the FEC. Federal Communications Commission (“FCC”) records show that the Trump campaign’s ads are placed by the firm Harris Sikes Media, but the campaign has not reported payments to that firm during the 2019-20 election cycle. Available evidence indicates that the Trump campaign is selecting, directing, and controlling these vendors and their work, yet is failing to report payments to the firms and is instead using AMMC as a conduit for its payments to the firms. Other possible vendors that the campaign may be paying through AMMC, such as those providing services for direct mail, software, subscriptions, or video production—all services for which the campaign has also described paying AMMC this cycle—are not ascertainable through public records.

In addition, CLC reviews some of the reporting that Parscale pays a number of people — notably Don Jr’s girlfriend and Eric Trump’s wife — for their work on the campaign.

Additionally, the Trump campaign is currently paying Parscale Strategy, the consulting firm of former Trump campaign manager Brad Parscale, approximately $48,000 a month for “strategy consulting,” and, according to multiple media reports, using Parscale Strategy as a conduit for salary payments to particular campaign staff.13


Similarly, in a July 15, 2020 article reporting on Parscale’s change of position within the campaign, the Washington Post reported that Parscale’s “firm, Parscale Strategy, bills for the campaign salaries of Lara Trump and Kimberly Guilfoyle, the wife and girlfriend respectively of Trump’s two oldest sons, Eric and Donald Jr.”93

In the 2020 cycle, the Trump campaign has not directly reported making any salary payments to campaign manager Brad Parscale, nor has it reported any salary payments to Kimberly Guilfoyle or Lara Trump.94

This is the kind of scheme that the NYT described in its blockbuster report on Trump’s tax returns, though in that case the “consultant” was Ivanka.

Examining the Trump Organization’s tax records, a curious pattern emerges: Between 2010 and 2018, Mr. Trump wrote off some $26 million in unexplained “consulting fees” as a business expense across nearly all of his projects.

In most cases the fees were roughly one-fifth of his income: In Azerbaijan, Mr. Trump collected $5 million on a hotel deal and reported $1.1 million in consulting fees, while in Dubai it was $3 million with a $630,000 fee, and so on.

Mysterious big payments in business deals can raise red flags, particularly in places where bribes or kickbacks to middlemen are routine. But there is no evidence that Mr. Trump, who mostly licenses his name to other people’s projects and is not involved in securing government approvals, has engaged in such practices.

Rather, there appears to be a closer-to-home explanation for at least some of the fees: Mr. Trump reduced his taxable income by treating a family member as a consultant, and then deducting the fee as a cost of doing business.

The “consultants” are not identified in the tax records. But evidence of this arrangement was gleaned by comparing the confidential tax records to the financial disclosures Ivanka Trump filed when she joined the White House staff in 2017. Ms. Trump reported receiving payments from a consulting company she co-owned, totaling $747,622, that exactly matched consulting fees claimed as tax deductions by the Trump Organization for hotel projects in Vancouver and Hawaii.

When CLC filed an FEC complaint against the grift of Lev Parnas and Igor Fruman in 2018, they shared the complaint with SDNY, which is what led to the prosecution of Rudy’s grifters. Here, the appropriate venue would likely be FL or TX (so less likely to pursue a vigorous investigation), but given CLC’s past practice, one should assume it’s likely the information was shared.

In 2016, Trump engaged in all sorts of dodgy campaign financing. But possibly because his key advisors were in such a cutthroat competition with each other, only the now-closed Manafort investigation and the inauguration funding got much scrutiny.

But now, with everything centralized in Parscale’s sports cars, it may be easier to see the grift.

Then there’s what Cambridge Analytica did, some independently and some with the campaign. Channel 4 in the UK has a story today on how aggressively Trump suppressed the black vote.

Finally, I think it’s also important to note that Trump’s Deputy Campaign Manager was being asked (there’s only one indication, May 13, 2016, that Gates delivered, and even that’s not definite) to provide Trump’s rat-fucker with voting lists in a parallel time table as he was providing Russian intelligence officer Konstantin Kilimnik polling data. In September, Russian hackers would spend much of the month making copies of Hillary’s analytics on AWS.

In any case, Trump continues to be surrounded by people who are clearly grifting off their work with him, without much clarity on how they’re doing so and what the implications of all that are.

47 replies
  1. BayStateLibrul says:

    How many more Supervillain books with sidekicks like Gates does it take?
    Rick Gates new book might shed a light…. “Wicked frickin’ Game – How Trump wins, Mueller fails, and America is a fucking loser.

  2. PieIsDamnGood says:

    It’s sad when someone tried to harm themselves. But I’m happy Parscale’s world is collapsing around him.

    • bmaz says:

      I do not wish that on anybody. And it is not clear that he really did try to harm himself, those were words from a spouse after an argument. The video is brutal. Parscale did everything the warrior cops asked, and they still brutalized him unnecessarily. If Parscale were black and this a slightly less classy neighborhood, he would be dead. Please do no gloat over this shit.

      • GKJames says:

        Yet the police chief, master of the material omission, is quoted as saying, “We went out and it was very short. We went and got him help.”

      • P J Evans says:

        He had a friend on the force, who talked him into coming out, which is not common. The takedown was unnecessary, though.

          • Rugger9 says:

            Well, if this is what it takes for the “warrior cop” trend to be stopped, that will be some good out of a bad situation. After all, if the white and connected guys can get tossed around like this, even the MAGAs aren’t safe.

            One does kind of wonder whether this is a sign that DJT is asking Parscale to leave the campaign in his usually classy way. It was interesting to see how quickly the body cam videos came out, which made me wonder about the true message being sent. I don’t think he’s been named as a source for anything in the press, just that he was the mastermind of the Tulsa rally and alleged to have grifted some of DJT’s cash.

            OT, I see Mick Mulvaney crawled out from hiding in Northern Ireland to say DJT’s only having one debate. I would agree that all signs point to a Biden “win” (HRC won too) and DJT simply can’t handle any tough questions. So, DJT will claim he won and decline to meet again.

            Mulvaney for his part really needs to address the open border issue that the UK is trying to ram down Eire’s throat in violation of the law (and admitted by HM’s Government) because I don’t see how that circle can be squared before a hard Brexit occurs and the Good Friday Agreement goes on the ash heap. That risks the return of the Troubles, which no one there really wants.

            • bmaz says:

              Eh, how can you really tell anymore? The video, as clipped as it is, is truly damning. I’ve been through too much of this with clients, and I just hate it. Even if Parscale was drunk, he was no threat whatsoever to the cops at that moment, and that is clear. But overreaction is all the warrior cops know. And that can be reformed. It is just bad all the way around.

            • soothsayer says:

              “That risks the return of the Troubles, which no one there really wants.”

              Hear hear. It would seem, under Russias massive worldwide efforts to cause chaos, that many old fissures are resurfacing: UK breaking from EU, Northern Ireland border, Scotland wondering about breakaway, Turkey & Greece disputes, Balkan tensions, Crimea 2nd recoupment etc, etc etc. On your point, I had read Boris argument about granting the UK uniformity in market decisions.

              I just read it is based on “the UK government wants to continue to have a joint market across England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland – the “internal market”. But instead of the rules and regulations around things like food and air quality and animal welfare being set in Brussels, now they have to be set closer to home – and there is a row over who should have the final say.”

              But, it would seem many in Boris own party do not agree with him, and many world leaders are not too keen on his possible reneging on the ’98Good Friday Agreement. This I understand.

              But, I am ignorant of the market dynamics at play, and would have to read more on it.

            • earlofhuntingdon says:

              The Tories have maliciously botched Brexit since day one. Despite their denials, their actions demonstrate they are intent on having the hardest possible break from the EU. Part of their fantasy entails doing SFA to prepare for it, which is necessary to avoid admitting how hard and expensive their choice will be.

              One of the things it hasn’t done is to prepare for the hard border between the UK and EU its position mandates. That includes a hard border between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, which would breach the Good Friday Agreement and alienate the American Congress no end. Apart from its other consequences, that would make a necessary new US-UK trade deal impossible to negotiate for now. SNAFU.

  3. soothsayer says:

    Hm, good post EW. Going by these final three points of yours:

    – Voting Lists – Rick Gates was being asked (there’s only one indication, May 13, 2016, that Gates delivered, and even that’s not definite) to provide Stone with voting lists
    – Polling Data – In a parallel time table Manafort was also providing Russian intelligence officer Konstantin Kilimnik polling data.
    – AWS Analytics – In September, Russian hackers would spend much of the month making copies of Hillary’s analytics on AWS.

    The way I read your analysis, is that the Russian State Hackers directly acquired Hillary’s AWS analytics, a Russian Intelligence Officer directly acquired Polling Data, and the open question is if Stone acquired Voting Lists, and if so, what did he do with it, or even, who may he also have given it to? Hope I am inferring this correctly, but when you close with what the implications of all this are, it would seem to lead to questions re: election collusion with Russians if Stone did get the Voting Lists and if he did also pass it on to any Russian entity, since additively all three activities together and their potential overall election targeting impact. I have no idea, but I feel if we ever get the answer, it would require a trip to stock up on popcorn.

    • Rugger9 says:

      I’m not sure what the Voting Lists refer to, are these the eligible voters?

      If so, then it’s not outside the realm of possibilities that the Russians helped with purging the rolls to have the voters discover on election day they were purged. Voter suppression is a standard GOP thing, and the lists would make it easy to target one group or party.

      OT, it seems Wilbur(rrr) Ross the Commerce Secretary has decided end data collection on the 5th of October in complete defiance of a court order saying the 31st. Such lawlessness is now routine for this WH, will the courts do something or Pelosi impeach Mr. Ross? Doubtful, but it would be appreciated,

      • MattyG says:

        On this subject, my feeling since the early going has been that CA mined the hacked DEM campaign data provided by the Russians and produced granular tactical lists of indivicuals for either a focused disinformation campaign or outright voter roll purges. DT/Manafort team periodically handed off lists to Russian cutouts which made their way back to the Russia “active measures” force.

        A carefully focused attack was made in the three selected swing states to acheive precisely the right number of doctored votes to avoid a recount. The effort complementd the standard GOP voter disenfranchisement schemes – but in a very focused way, and probably direct meddling with state voting machinery. Just a theory of course.

        • Nehoa says:

          I think that it is difficult to do substantial changes to voter rolls or vote counts without there being telltale signs that somebody did that. The presumption though is that someone would take a close look. IIRC, Wisconsin and other close-vote states refused to let such reviews be conducted by outside parties.

          • MattyG says:

            I didn’t find the governements reassurances that “no votes were changed” particularly persuasive given (a) they found evidence of “unsuccessfull” digital breeches of state machinery (b) offered no detail as to how or why they concluded the breaches were unsuccessful, and (c) all the while maintaining that it was technically difficult to know exactly what happend at local level.

            The vague public statements seemed at odds with the categorical assurance that “not votes were changed”. Maybe it wasn’t votes that were changed but a carefully selected slate of registered voters that were purged. The Kremlin may have had the necessary cover and expertise for this tactical strike – and relieved the GOP apparatus of the task in this instance.

            There were a few articles at the time by information statisticians calling attention to voting aberations in select precincts in the three swing states that secured the EC for DT that couldn’t easily be accounted for by standard methods.

            I can’t help but think we will revisit this part of the story soon.

            • AndTheSlithyToves says:

              MattyG, exactly. This is what has been driving me crazy since the 2016 election. Feinstein and Grassley were both briefed by the FBI in early 2017 about the successful cyber-attack by Russia on the 2016 US election, and must have an inkling that Trump was not the legitimate winner. Cheri Jacobus (former Republican Campaign operative and a creator of “America Reads The Mueller Report”) appeared in late August on the “Stuttering John Podcast” to outline how the Russian cyber-criminals–using the stolen polling data (that Marcy has repeatedly exposed) from fellow criminals Stone and Co.–hacked into the voting systems of only three states that Trump was losing on election night and changed their votes. Here’s the podcast–she does the first half and Sarah Kendzior does the second half.

              • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

                I just want to reiterate this part of what MattyG said, because it is critically important:

                Maybe it wasn’t votes that were changed but a carefully selected slate of registered voters that were purged. The Kremlin may have had the necessary cover and expertise for this tactical strike – and relieved the GOP apparatus of the task in this instance.

                I’m in Washington State, which is totally mail-in.

                My voting status was nullified, but because my ballot did not arrive in mid-October, I called the local elections office. (I was able to answer a ton of questions to confirm my identity, and my status was restored in time for me to get my ballot before Election Day.)

                My information could have been gleaned from the following sources of public information:
                — campaign donor lists
                — Dem delegate lists
                — voter history
                — possibly ISP blog comments
                — subscriptions

                To reiterate MattyG’s point: my vote was not hacked, but my voting status was nullified. So they didn’t change my vote, but they sure as hell stole it.

                MattyG has sussed their strategy precisely, IMVHO. (Quite frankly, I tip my hat in admiration at so succinct a summary.)

                And William Barr thinks he can bury mountains of dirt? Sweet Jesus: only a wildly egotistical, technically ignorant fool would suppose that was possible in today’s world. I don’t know how this fool is going to go down, but it’s as certain as gravity that he will.

                • AndTheSlithyToves says:

                  “And William Barr thinks he can bury mountains of dirt?”
                  As the EW folks have repeatedly pointed out, he successfully did it before for GHW Bush and was amply rewarded in the private sector afterward. And he was doing quite well until COVID came along.
                  Remember, he auditioned for the job, and Jeffrey Epstein–who, among many other things, knew Trump had no money–wasn’t pulled out of circulation until Barr was installed.
                  It is a transnational crime syndicate, and, as Jacobus says, to defeat it, you need to think/plan like the criminals.

                  • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

                    Okay, I defer to your points about Barr. However, it appears that he’s getting testy, more arrogant (if that were possible), and leaving more breadcrumbs. IOW, sloppier now.

                    As for transnational crime… yes. That’s what more Americans need to grasp.

          • AndTheSlithyToves says:

            Nehoa, additionally, as Marcy has pointed out, Bill Barr is actively running around and wrongly classifying materials about Russia’s current election interference to bury it and keep it out of the public eye.

          • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

            Voting systems can be hacked. Investigating and finding the goods requires institutional support and resources — one reason that William Barr at the head of DoJ (which oversees FBI) is absolutely toxic.

            • MattyG says:

              Yep, and why DT appointed him. Working back to DTs ties with Russian election activity, and fleshing out that activity more clearly, is the historical dimension to this craven scandal. More than the dirty tricks campaigning – at least that’s domestic… as Mueller seems to have left the job incomplete (lots of reasons here) a lot of work is left to be done.

              • readerOfTeaLeaves says:


                I would add that a long haul with chronic illness taught me that there is no replacement for:
                (1) a healthy immune system, or
                (2) an immune system that receives enough assistance to be able to recover.
                The latter is long and slow, but relies upon a correct diagnosis.

                We need a correct diagnosis to understand what’s gone wrong, so that the system as a whole can be restored.

                That requires a deep understanding of what went wrong, what factors interacted, and how the system will need to be restored, and even improved.

                (I have long thought of Marcy and the eWheelies as political epidemiologists.)

                • soothsayer says:

                  Regardless of what Manafort, and Stone were up to in 2016, and what they did give to the Russians, which is of course an issue. Right now in 2020, the FBI and CISA are making a point to ensure people have confidence in our election infrastructure. But also, key, the extra time it will take to certify the results. I agree with them, and my wifes US Think Tank is also working to ensure there is trust in our democractic processes.

                  Key point, as even Trump has already been talking about ballot fraud, and this is what our adversaries are also trying to push, so he really needs to stop pushing this dezza. On, cybersecurity, the FBI and CISA make a key statement that “The public should also be aware that if foreign actors or cyber criminals were able to successfully change an election-related website, the underlying data and internal systems would remain uncompromised.” Anyways, here is their recent PSA on the subject:

      • soothsayer says:

        “I’m not sure what the Voting Lists refer to, are these the eligible voters?”

        I dunno. But yes, I assumed the implication is eligible voters based on “voter registration lists” since as EW states:

        “He asked for “lists” — once explicitly described as donor lists, but described as voter registration lists by Stone’s attorney, Bruce Rogow, at trial — from Rick Gates at least nine times.”

        • DAT says:

          “The Great Hack” on Netflix, from a year ago covers some of this territory. One point they make, not made above, it that election cybersecurity, on the state and local level, is risible. The title put me off, but the info is welcome, revealing, and chilling.

  4. harpie says:

    re: FLYNN, 15 minutes ago:
    7:49 PM · Sep 28, 2020

    NEW: Attorney for fired former FBI Chief of Counterintelligence, Peter Strozk, allege in court filings that documents purported to be his hand-written notes were altered.

    He says the notes, which were filed by Ret. Lt. Gen. Flynn’s attorneys, include the addition of two dates.

    Specifically, Strozk’s attorney Aitan Goelman says that the additions were not written by Strozk and were, “apparently designed to indicate the date or dates on which the notes were written.”
    “On at least one occasion the date added is wrong and could be read to suggest that a meeting at the White House happened before it actually did” [!!!], Goelman writes.

  5. FL Resister says:

    Regarding the whole Parscale affair of Sunday evening.
    His wife reports suicide threats but today we learn she has bruises.
    So which is it? Domestic abuse or suicide?

    Also, looks like Parscale is definitely under some heat for payments to Trump campaign digital operations through American Made (Man) Media Consultants (AMMC) and to Trump surrogates Lara and Kimberly, Eric’s wife and Don Jr’s girlfriend, through Parscale Strategy.

    Problem is, any payments over $200 have to be disclosed by campaign. And a hundred million for digital and text work and $15,000 a month to the ladies should have been itemized by the Trump campaign but payments were funneled through Brad.

    Why do so many Trump guys beat up on women?
    Brad’s under some pressure but I wonder if the victim wasn’t protecting her abuser by claiming he was threatening to harm himself.

    [FYI, I have changed your username back to the one you had been using. Not certain you intended to use your RL name. Please advise in a reply, thanks. / ~Rayne]

  6. BayStateLibrul says:

    Tick Tok.
    “Of course, don’t worry about.”?

    “Also hanging over Trump is a decade-long audit battle with the Internal Revenue Service over the legitimacy of a $72.9 million tax refund that he claimed, and received, after declaring huge losses. An adverse ruling could cost him more than $100 million.”

    Ten years? Why hasn’t the IRS bumped up this matter to the Tax Court for a ruling? It needs to be resolved one way or another.

    • readerOfTeaLeaves says:

      David Cay Johnson has said in the past, and said again 9/28 on msnbc, that the IRS has lost about 1/3 of its auditors during the past decade. (I may have the details incorrect, but that’s the general idea.)

      If the Dems win bigly, one of the things they need to do is to re-invest in the IRS, as well as financial crimes investigations.

      The gutting of the IRS and obsessing on tax cuts is definitely neoliberalism, and it’s past its pull date. (I take Chuck Grassley and Richard Shelby as High Priests of Neoliberalist Doctrine: they’ve built entire careers on tax cut ideology.)

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