Mulvaney: Never Thought Trump Was Capable of ‘Inciting the Riot’ Until Yesterday

White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney said Wednesday on CNN’s “The Lead” that his mind has been changed by the testimony from Mark Meadows’ former aide Cassidy Hutchinson about Donald Trump’s role in inciting the January 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol.

Anchor Jake Tapper said, “When you say things could get dark for Donald Trump, what do you mean?”

Mulvaney said, “Well, Jake, there’s really interesting revelations. Again, if you take what Cassidy Hutchinson said at face value, then Donald Trump knew that the protesters had weapons and encouraged them to go to the Capitol anyway. That was stunning to me. I have been defending the president over the course of the last year. Even though I quit my job over the way he conducted himself during the riot, I never really thought until yesterday that he was even capable of inciting the riot.”

He continued, “But if he knew those weapons were there and said they’re not here for me, let’s go down to the Capitol. That is problematic for the president. If there’s a direct line from the Proud Boys, Oath Keepers, right-wing extremist groups into the White House, that’s a problem for the president, and Cassidy Hutchinson mentioned yesterday for the first time that Mark Meadows was in communications with those folks.”

Mulvaney added, “And finally if there’s really witness tampering, which is, I don’t think something that is getting nearly as much attention. It came very late in the hearing yesterday, but if there is really witness tampering by Trump or someone in his inner circle, that’s a serious problem. Again, it was the first time we have heard a lot of this yesterday. We’re starting to get some bush pushback that maybe not all of the testimony is accurate, but if you take it at face value, things could get bad for Trump and his team quickly.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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