Rep. Eric Swalwell seemed to cut the cheese live on national TV ... but the cheese, as it turns out, was apparently a studio mug.
The California congressman was doing an interview Monday on MSNBC's 'Hardball' with host Chris Matthews -- and while he was going on and on about Ukraine and alleged malfeasance by DT ... something that sounded like a loud, wet fart blasted through the airwaves.
It certainly seemed like flatulence, and Rep. Swalwell even paused a moment right afterward in what many viewed as an acknowledgment of the ripped gas. And, of course, #fartgate and #shartgate soon started to trend everywhere on Twitter as a result.
Sorry to disappoint the conspiracy theorists - it was the #hardball mug scraping across the desk. Get yours today and let’s get back to the news! https://t.co/SG8Owm2IBw
Funny enough, the official 'Hardball' account excused the noise away as someone dragging a coffee mug across a table in the studio -- which just happened to get picked up on a mic.
Swalwell was ecstatic, quickly using the network's cover as what he described as "TOTAL EXONERATION!" -- very Trump-like, right?! And yes, everyone had a good laugh over it -- Republicans and Dems alike. It might've been the most uniting thing in a while, actually.
And, for those looking to go even deeper down the rabbit hole ... some have pointed to a theory that the would-be fart actually came from Matthews. Apparently, there's a history of gas being passed on his show over the years, as one Twitter user dutifully pointed out.
and finally, exhibit d: Matthews once again farting over a guest. also i utterly love the dude who recorded this, youtube user "Lee Kingsnatch" pic.twitter.com/dcjzDpoKY7