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.”
"To be clear, what you described is a quid pro quo" -- Here's Mick Mulvaney casually admitting that Trump held up aid to Ukraine as leverage to get the Ukrainian government to investigate the 2016 election pic.twitter.com/ylz7BKEmKd— Aaron Rupar (@atrupar) October 17, 2019
Then Mulvaney insisted it had all been “misconstrued” by the media.
Not so fast ...
Hey, #MickMulvaney— Kristin Karnitz (@KristinKarnitz) October 17, 2019
I’m not a member of the media, I’m just an ordinary, average US citizen. And I just wanted to say that I heard you say it loud and clear today. Real time. Out of your mouth. No bias, no spin.
So, spare us the walk back. You’re busted. https://t.co/jSc9M7CeQa
Okay, Mick. You can run around swearing to Trump that you didn't shoot yourself in the foot on live tv. But your limp, that bloody trail, and THE FUCKING VIDEO beg to differ. #QuidProQuo #TrueConfessions #MickMulvaney #DumberThanTrump #AndThatsDumb— Ron Asher (@rmasher2) October 18, 2019
No one is obligated to quote that Mulvaney statement telling everyone he didn't say what we all saw him say.— Chris Hayes (@chrislhayes) October 17, 2019
THIS...is how you question someone like Mike Mulvaney. @ayesharascoe— W Smith Ω 🧢😎 Impeach Trump & Fumigate The WH. (@WesSmith123) October 17, 2019
Turns out he confessed to the whole thing. Then later tried to retract it. Sorry, too late. #Mulvaney #MulvaneyPresser #MickMulvaney pic.twitter.com/NMpagOnYVB
Trump Tool Mick Mulvaney publicity admitted that Trump was indeed engaged in a quid pro quo and then told the press to, “Get over it”— Stone 🥶 (@stonecold2050) October 17, 2019
Someone should tell this idiot that when Nixon got impeached, his Chief of Staff was put in prison.#MickMulvaney #ImpeachTrumpPenceBarrPompeo pic.twitter.com/URA9C2JZ1l
How many hours will it be before “acting” COS #MickMulvaney ”resigns?” Despite his denials, the video doesn’t lie. There’s zero chance that the media “misconstrued” his remarks.— AlisonWild (@AlisonTorres) October 17, 2019
Ruh-roh, Mick. It sucks when you’re paid to lie but you accidentally blurt out the truth.🙊
For those thinking that we use #QuidProQuo routinely in negotiations with foreign leaders, there is one very big difference here: the beneficiary was Trump (attempting to take down a political opponent), not the United States. That difference is what makes what he did illegal.— Kelley (@craffingKelley) October 17, 2019
Hope Mulvaney wasn’t planning to install an inground pool with his Christmas bonus! 😂 #QuidProQuo— Diane Reid 🇨🇦🌎 (@dianemariereid) October 17, 2019
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This article originally appeared on HuffPost.