Then-President Donald Trump and acting chief of staff Mick Mulvaney listen to comments during a luncheon with representatives of the United Nations Security Council, in the Cabinet Room at the White House on December 5, 2019.
Mark Wilson/Getty Images
- Mick Mulvaney served as the acting White House Chief of Staff from 2019 to 2020.
- He resigned from a position as US Special Envoy for Northern Ireland after the January 6 insurrection.
- Mulvaney said testimony from a former White House aide posed a “serious problem” for Trump.
A former White House aide’s testimony that Donald Trump knew some protesters were armed before they marched to the US Capitol — and that his own top advisors asked for pardons after the January 6 riot — combined to make Tuesday’s congressional hearing on the insurrection a “very, very bad day” for the former president, according to a onetime Trump loyalist.
“A stunning 2 hours,” Mick Mulvaney posted on Twitter following the testimony of Cassidy Hutchinson, a former aide to Mark Meadows, who succeeded Mulvaney as Trump’s White House chief of staff.
Mulvaney listed four reasons why the hearing by the congressional committee investigating January 6 was so damning, citing the sworn testimony of Hutchinson: that “Trump knew the protesters had guns”; that he grabbed the wheel of his presidential vehicle when told that Secret Service would not take him to the US Capitol; that there appeared to be “a line” connecting the Trump White House to the far-right Proud Boys; and that his own aides — including Meadows and personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani — sought pardons in the aftermath of the attack.
The very act of encouraging protesters to “fight” for Trump at the US Capitol and inciting a riot was itself sufficient to have White House staffers “charged with every crime imaginable,” according to the former president’s lawyers, as recounted by Hutchinson.
But most damning, Mulvaney said, was the evidence presented by the committee’s vice chair, Rep. Liz Cheney, a Republican from Wyoming, suggesting possible witness tampering on the part of those close to the former president.
At the close of the hearing, Cheney shared messages — recalling mafia-style intimidation — that she said were sent to those called to testify before the January 6 committee.
“[A person] let me know you have your deposition tomorrow,” one message stated. “He wants me to let you know that he’s thinking about you. He knows you’re loyal, and you’re going to do the right thing when you go in for your deposition.”
Per Mulvaney, while other claims were more “sensational,” the “real bomb that was dropped was the implied charge of witness tampering.” If “hard evidence” exists, he added, “that is a serious problem for the former president.”
Mulvaney was still working for the White House when the insurrection unfolded, continuing to serve as the US special envoy for Northern Ireland weeks after Trump had refused to commit to a peaceful transfer of power.
In a now-infamous piece for The Wall Street Journal, published days after the 2020 election, Mulvaney assured the public that Trump would — should he be found the loser — “participate in the peaceful transfer of power.”
“I have every expectation that Mr. Trump will be, act and speak like a great president should — win or lose,” he added.
Mulvaney ultimately resigned on January 7.
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