Shep Smith reports on Mick Mulvaney's pay-to-play admission, as Fox News finally covers the scandal
Fox's John Roberts: Mulvaney "has long said things like this"
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From the April 25 edition of Fox News' Shepard Smith Reporting:
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SHEPARD SMITH (HOST): The White House budget director says, when he was in Congress -- this is really extraordinary to hear, that he met with lobbyists, but he would only meet with him if they gave his campaign money. Pay-for-play, it sounded like. The New York Times reports that Mick Mulvaney made the comments to more than 1,000 banking executives at a conference in Washington yesterday. It's the kind of thing you say in private but rarely in public. The Times quotes him as saying, "we had a hierarchy in my office in Congress. If you're a lobbyist who never gave me money, I didn't talk to you. If you're a lobbyist who did give us money, I might talk to you. If you came from back home and sat in my lobby, I talked to you without exception, regardless of the financial contributions." In other words, constituents didn't have to pay for their meetings. Mulvaney is also acting director of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.
Back to John Roberts at the White House. It's like some of the things you used to just whisper or say in your head are now coming out of people's mouths.
JOHN ROBERTS (FOX NEWS CHIEF WHITE HOUSE CORRESPONDENT): He has long said things like this. I talked to members of Mick Mulvaney's staff this afternoon. They insist that the comments from his speech were taken totally out of context. What he was doing was he was praising a group of constituents, in this case local bankers and pay-day lenders, saying it's important for you to come to Washington, go bang on doors on Capitol Hill and speak to your representatives directly. The message I'm told that he was delivering was that lobbying contributions mean nothing compared to seeing somebody from back home. It was not about giving money for access.