Acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney pulled an astounding about-face Thursday when he flatly denied he said what he’d said about a quid pro quo in President Donald Trump’s pressure on Ukraine to launch an investigation into his political rivals. But Mulvaney was captured on video — and critics on Twitter are going with what they actually heard him say.
“I heard you say it loud and clear today. Real time. Out of your mouth,” one complained.
Mulvaney explained at a press conference that the U.S. withheld nearly $400 million in military aid to Ukraine in part to pressure the nation to investigate Trump’s debunked conspiracy theory that Democrats manipulated the 2016 election.
“That’s why we held up the money,” announced Mulvaney. ABC News reporter Jon Karl noted: “To be clear, what you just described is a quid pro quo.” Mulvaney responded: “We do that all the time with foreign policy.”
He later added: “Get over it. There’s going to be political influence in foreign policy .... Elections have consequences.”
Then Mulvaney insisted it had all been “misconstrued” by the media.
Not so fast ...