(NBC News) Acting White House Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney admitted Thursday that U.S. military aid to Ukraine was delayed because the Trump administration wanted the country to investigate a debunked conspiracy theory focusing on Democrats and interference in the 2016 election.
“We do that all the time with foreign policy,” Mulvaney said, adding “Get over it. There is going to be political influence in foreign policy.”
Though President Trump has admitted he wanted Ukraine to investigate Joe Biden and his son Hunter as well, Mulvaney insists the goal of withholding aid was to root out corruption, not dig up political dirt.
“The money held up had nothing to do with the Bidens,” he said.
Mulvaney’s statements came as President Trump’s ambassador to the European Union was testifying in the impeachment inquiry.
NBC News obtained Gordon Sondland’s prepared testimony, in which he puts the president and his personal lawyer Rudy Giuliani at the center of the Ukraine controversy, and describes himself as “disappointed” in their decisions.
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