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House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy in 2016: 'There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump'

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In a private meeting with Republican colleagues last year, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy commented that then-presidential candidate Donald Trump and California congressional colleague Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Huntington Beach) were being paid by Russian President Vladimir Putin.

“There’s two people I think Putin pays: Rohrabacher and Trump,” McCarthy said in the recording of a June 15 exchange obtained and published by the Washington Post. At that point, House Speaker Paul D. Ryan (R-Wis.) cut off the conversation and swore those present to secrecy.

The Post also provided a full transcript of the tape.

McCarthy's and Ryan's offices quickly pushed back on the story, stressing that the premise of the tape was misconstrued in reporters' questions, and that McCarthy was joking.

The transcript of the tape repeatedly notes laughter, and that McCarthy was laughing.

This was an attempt at humor gone wrong. No surprise @WashingtonPost tried to contort this into breaking news.

 
 

Goodness, I don’t lie. Period. What was presented to me originally was far different than what they ultimately presented: an obvious joke.

 
 

Rohrabacher's long-standing friendliness toward Russia has been a source of confusion in Washington for years.


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Some additional confirmation from Kyle.

 


K-1 - AOS & ROC Timeline  - Immigration and the Health Exchange Price of Love in the UK Thinking of Returning to UK?

 

First met: 12/31/04 - Engaged: 9/24/09
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Touched on website (fixed?): 12/9/14 - Poked USCIS: 4/1/15
NOA 2 email: 5/4/15 (hard copy 5/11/15)
Sent to NVC: 5/8/15 - NVC received + #'s assigned: 5/15/15 (estimated)
NVC sent: 5/19/15 - London received/ready: 5/26/15
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