May 11, 2022

Dustin Stockton, poker player turned MAGA activist, cooperating with the January 6 committee

A man who describes himself as a competitive poker player was instrumental in organizing the rally that led to deadly violence in Washington, DC last January.

Dustin Stockton and Jennifer Lawrence have been dubbed the Bonnie and Clyde of MAGA World, and are now speaking to Congress about organizing efforts around the January 6 rally in Washington DC that turned into an insurgency. (Image: political)

Dustin Stockton, 38, of Reno, Nevada, appeared before Congress for deposition on Tuesday, providing seven hours of testimony to the special committee investigating the Jan.6 attack on the United States Capitol. He and his fiancee, Jennifer Lynn Lawrence, who is due to be dropped off on Wednesday, are said to have cooperated and are willing to reveal what they know about how a rally turned into a riot.

Stockton lawyer Josh Ness said his client brought with him a “treasure trove” of documents and suggested that members of the Trump administration and Congress “have good reason to shake in their boots today.”

Once darlings and power brokers of the Tea Party movement and Trump’s first campaign, Stockton and Lawrence were dubbed by Politico magazine in a November article as MAGA World’s Bonnie and Clyde. Now their cooperation could reveal key information about how the Jan.6 uprising was organized and who could be responsible for the mob action that left five dead and 138 Capitol Hill police injured.

From aspiring poker pro to Mr. Tea Party

As a poker player, Stockton was not particularly accomplished. He has four silver finishes registered as a live tournament player, including winning a $ 150 nightly event at Caesars Palace in 2015, and most recently, a 238th place finish in a $ 1,500 event at the 2019 WSOP. But he had a poker mentality that shaped his view of the world.

Stockton wrote about playing poker in his 2013 self-published autobiography, “Community organizer: a snack story. “

“I didn’t have a college degree or any serious career prospect outside of the difficult and unpredictable world of competitive poker,” he wrote.

For a while in 2008, he was trying to make ends meet as a forklift driver and online poker pro, but would change his career outlook after the birth of his first child.

Frustration over the leadership of Harry Reid, then Nevada Senate Majority Leader, and seeing the value of his newly purchased Reno home go underwater, led Stockton to found the Western Representation PAC. . He quickly discovered his skills as an organizer and online fundraiser.

Over the next five years, Stockton pursued Reid and went from being a warehouse worker and part-time poker player to rubbing shoulders with political heavyweights like Steve Bannon, whom he first met. times at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) in 2012.

“What I have always liked about poker is that in most cases cruelty is frowned upon,” Stockton told the Washington Free Beacon in 2013. “At a poker table, it’s the opposite. The guy with the most strategy and the most ruthless is rewarded with all the money. It’s a pretty good gig. The policy is similar in that the more you prepare your coin, the more you are rewarded.

The glowing profile in the conservative publication gave him the name “Mr. Tea Party ”, and in it Stockton said that the intersection between the poker table and politics“ is really a bit disgusting ”.

He also spoke about the games he knew in and around the Beltway. “There are a handful of consultants who are good, but most of the poker games I’ve played in DC, the pros would pay to get access,” Stockton said. “These guys have a lot of money, and they’re as bad at poker as they are in politics. It is a beautiful thing.

Stockton Book Community Organizer

Dustin Stockton has written a book about his adventures climbing the Conservative ranks. (Photo: Amazon)

MAGA’s Rising Stars

Stockton, alongside Lawrence, worked for Bannon at Breitbart. According to a Rolling Stone profile of the two, they “reported directly to Bannon and honed their skills doing mischief and headlines on” special projects “for his site.

Usually dressed more like people found at the Palace Station Casino on a random Tuesday night rather than their fellow Ivy League, wearing Brooks Brother, and smelling of smoke or weed (to treat his hiccups, of course), Stockton and Lawrence never penetrated inside the political establishment.

Still, they persisted, putting their skills to work for We Build the Wall, a nonprofit that used GoFundMe to raise more than $ 20 million that was to be turned over to the Treasury to build a wall along the border. south with Mexico. The money raised for this effort, however, never made its way into the federal government coffers, which has Federal fraud charges against Bannon.

As part of the investigation, U.S. Post officers raided the couple’s campervan outside a hotel-casino in Mesquite, Nevada, and seized their computers and cellphones. Trump ultimately pardoned Bannon before going on trial. Stockton said there was talk of a “general forgiveness” for anyone involved in the failure of the We Build the Wall campaign. When these never materialized for anyone other than Bannon, Stockton said that’s when cracks in their staunch support emerged.

“We’re just tired of seeing people take advantage of others and then take the consequences,” Stockton told Politico. “There are a lot of scammers in our space, a lot of people who don’t act in good faith, and we know a lot about it, and we’re willing to share.”

Dustin Stockton Poker Tattoo

In the week since Jan. 6, Stockton shared photos (from an “undisclosed location”) of his new suicide king tattoo. (Image: Facebook / dustin.stockton)

The cards speak

Stockton told Politico he now believes Joe Biden was fairly elected president of the United States. But last November, he was sure the election had been stolen, which prompted him and Lawrence, who works with pro-Trump group PAC Women for America First, to get involved in a bus tour. in several states to disseminate electoral conspiracy theories to angry and impressionable crowds.

People who spoke at those rallies, including Stockton and Lawrence, have repeatedly encouraged people to descend on Washington on January 6 for the March for Trump rally. However, they both deny cheering for the siege on Capitol Hill when that fateful day arrived, saying they were frustrated with what appeared to be fighting words from Trump and others, and left the rally before the violence does not break out.

Since then, it’s not so much that the mega-MAGA couple has changed their political philosophy. Instead, they say they have their eyes open to the corruption surrounding their cause and see it as their civic duty to help expose the truth.

Stockton told the Nevada Independent via SMS on his way to Washington, DC, “It is important to us that the hundreds of thousands of people who have not participated in any violence make their voices heard in official debates. We have as much interest and desire as anyone to get to the bottom of the Capitol tragedy almost a year ago because it tarnished the peaceful protests we worked so hard to organize.

In an interview with Anderson Cooper following his testimony on Tuesday, Stockton explained how someone so committed to the MAGA cause could have their eyes peeled for another Donald Trump. “In a lot of ways, we’ve bought into what has essentially turned out to be a bluff. “

Written by

Bob pajich

Bob Pajich is a poker news reporter, creative writer, and poker player who‘s never met a suited connector he didn’t like.

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