Conspiracy That Mueller Tipped Off CNN On Stone’s Arrest Originated With Ex-Fox Host Greta Van Susteren

Conspiracy That Mueller Tipped Off CNN On Stone’s Arrest Originated With Ex-Fox Host Greta Van Susteren

Following the early morning arrest of longtime Trump adviser and notorious political trickster Roger Stone on charges of obstruction and witness tampering in relation to Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s Russia investigation, all eyes were turned to President Donald Trump’s Twitter account to see when the Tweeter-In-Chief would publicly react to the news.

It took a few hours, but the president finally grabbed his phone and tweeted out a response. And his first public comment was to call the Mueller probe a “WITCH HUNT” and reiterate that there was “NO COLLUSION.” Oh yeah, and he also accused the special counsel of tipping off CNN of Stone’s arrest.

So, what exactly is Trump referencing here? And how did it make its way to his Twitter feed?

Well, a CNN crew was staked out outside Stone’s Florida home this morning and was able to capture remarkable live footage of the FBI arresting the Republican political operative. a CNN crew coincidentally being at Stone’s house in the early AM hours as federal agents raided the property to arrest Stone led one former Fox News host to unequivocally state the FBI “obviously tipped off CNN.”

It didn’t take long for Greta Van Susteren’s accusation, which was complete speculation on her part, to make its way to the rest of the right-wing media universe. Shortly after she hit send, conspiracy site InfoWars — an outlet where Stone has appeared countless times — published a piece based on her tweet. This was followed by several articles at far-right sites such as Gateway Pundit and Newsmax, leading to Drudge Report placing the allegation in its banner.

CNN, however, was able to provide a perfectly acceptable and logical explanation for why the crew was outside Stone’s home this morning. As CNN producer David Shortell noted on the air shortly after the arrest, an unusual amount of federal grand jury activity related to the Mueller investigation on Thursday led them to believe Friday could be a busy day. especially when it came to the Roger Stone angle of the probe. Additionally, it has long been speculated that a Stone indictment was inevitable, specifically by Stone himself.

And as CNN’s Oliver Darcy pointed out later in the day, CNN justice reporter Shimon Prokupecz reported on Thursday night that there was unusual grand jury activity and that it could indicate new indictments coming.

CNN’s PR team also responded to the president’s tweet by noting that they were able to capture the arrest due to “reporting and interpreting clues revealed in the course of events,” further adding that this is “called journalism.”

As for Van Susteren, she quickly tried to explain that she didn’t believe there was anything “nefarious” on CNN’s end if they had been given an FBI tip that an arrest was about to happen, as news organizations should act on any tips of this nature. Eventually, however, she completely backed away from her initial claim based off a conversation with a source.

“I am told – by a good source – that I am wrong to think CNN acted on a tip and hence was at Roger Stone’s today,” she wrote. “I assume thus that what is right is that it was fortuitous…that CNN acted on a hunch after putting some clues together (including activity at the grand jury)…”

She added, “And as an aside…the story really is not whether CNN was there or not (although the video is helpful to understand the news)-what is the REAL news: the arrest of Roger Stone.”

It was too late, though, to put the genie back in the bottle when it came to conservative media figures — and the President of the United States — running wild with the theory. And she even acknowledged that they were ignoring her correction.

“It is even being ignored by many others,” she said in response to a tweet noting that conservative outlets were disregarding the fact she backed off the accusation. “People are cherry picking my tweet..yes, the first one was wrong but check the others that corrected it and get a full picture.”

Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona

Justin Baragona is the founder/publisher of Contemptor and a contributor to The Daily Beast. He was previously the Cable News Correspondent for Mediaite and prior to starting Contemptor, he worked on the editorial staff of PoliticusUSA. During that time, he had his work quoted by USA Today and BBC News, among others. Justin began his published career as a political writer for 411Mania. He resides in St. Louis, MO with his wife and pets.