Mick Mulvaney, whom Trump selected to head his Office of Management and Budget, was forced to humiliate his new boss on live TV.
During his confirmation hearings before the Senate Budget Committee, Rep. Mulvaney (R-South Carolina) admitted that President Trump’s inaugural crowd was smaller than President Obama’s. Senator Jeff Merkley (D-Oregon) began the exchange with Mulvaney by referencing a past description of the South Carolina Congressman by Senator Tim Cotton (R-Arkansas) as a “bold truth-teller.”
To test Mulvaney’s ability to tell the truth, Sen, Merkley had an aide show two photos of the U.S. Capitol side-by-side. One photo was from January 20, 2009, when President Barack Obama was being sworn in for his first inauguration. The second photo was of President Trump’s inauguration, taken on January 20, 2017, at the same angle. Mulvaney smiled as Merkley asked him which crowd was bigger, first acknowledging that the question was not in direct relation to the Office of Management and Budget.
After the aide showed the two photos, Senator Tim Kaine (D-Virginia), who is seen sitting on Sen. Merkley’s right, struggles to maintain his composure during the savage exchange, stifling a smile while sipping on his water.
WATCH: (This requires caps) SENATOR JEFF MERKLEY JUST HELD UP PHOTOS OF INAUGURAL CROWDS + MADE A TRUMP APPOINTEE ADMIT TRUMP'S WAS SMALLER pic.twitter.com/baOZldIiBn
— Yashar (@yashar) January 24, 2017
SENATOR JEFF MERKLEY: “Which crowd is larger? The 2009 crowd, or the 2017 crowd?”
REPRESENTATIVE MICK MULVANEY: “Senator, if you’ll allow me to give the disclaimer that I’m not really sure how this ties to OMB, I’ll be happy to answer your question, which was, from that picture, it does appear that the crowd on the left hand side (2009) is bigger than the crowd on the right-hand side (2017).”
MERKLEY: “Thank you. The president disagreed about this in his news report. He said, ‘It’s a lie, we caught them. We caught them in a beauty,’ referring to the press reporting. He says, ‘It looked like a million, a million and a half people.'”
In a recent report from the Washington Post, in which reporters talked to several unnamed “senior officials” within the White House, President Trump was apparently furious at the media coverage that showed President Obama’s inauguration crowd was bigger than Trump’s. The report also revealed that the origin of White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer’s first presser in the White House briefing room — in which he shouted at the White House Press Corps for accurately reporting inauguration attendance numbers — came from Trump himself.
As of this writing, Trump has yet to admit that his crowd was not, as Sean Spicer put it, “[T]he largest audience to ever witness an inauguration, period, both in person and around the globe.”
Tom Cahill is a writer for US Uncut based in the Pacific Northwest. He specializes in coverage of political, economic, and environmental news. You can contact him via email at [email protected], or follow him on Facebook.