East Bay Rep. Eric Swalwell is denying that he loudly passed gas during an appearance on MSNBC on Monday. The toot was clear to many viewers of “Hardball with Chris Matthews” and appeared precisely timed between Swalwell’s comments about Presdient Trump’s impeachment inquiry hearings.
#Fartgate quickly became a trending topic on Twitter Monday evening. In many ways the incident has garnered Swalwell far more press than anything he did during his brief presidential campaign earlier this year.
Although many on social media believe the video is damning evidence of Swalwell’s guilt, he denies passing gas during the television appearance. One Twitter user sought Zapruder film-like evidence.
According to one report, Swalwell noted the video was funny, but added that he did not hear the sound while he was speaking.
A number of Twitter users questioned the denial, noting the sound lined up perfectly with a pause in his sentence and slight body movement. Swalwell also appeared to grin after the flatulence sound was heard.
The live television moment, however, capture the zeitgeist on Twitter.
Hardball’s Twitter feed blamed the sound on a coffee mug dragging across the table. Some on social media were not buying it.
Swalwell responded with “total exoneration!”
The embarrassing moment comes a day before Swalwell and members of the House Intelligence Committee will resume impeachment hearings on Tuesday morning.