Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney apologized on Friday for criticizing an employee of the Congressional Budget Office who issued a budget score of the GOP's healthcare bill that he called "absurd."
Mulvaney told the Washington Examiner that the days of using the CBO to fairly score legislation has "probably come and gone."
He also criticized Holly Harvey, who scored the Obamacare bill for CBO and who also scored the GOP bill to repeal and replace that law.
"We're hearing now that the person in charge of the Affordable Health Care Act methodology is an alum of the Hillarycare program in the 1990s who was brought in by Democrats to score the ACA," he said.
But after fielding criticism, Mulvaney said Friday he was wrong to single out that employee. He said he agreed with a complaint from Rep. John Yarmouth, D-Ky., that he was impugning the integrity of a public servant.
"John is correct," Mulvaney said in a statement. "And for that I'd like to apologize."
He said like any organization, the "buck should stop at the top," and said it's the CBO director who should be held responsible, not lower-level employees.
Still, Mulvaney said his overall criticism of the CBO remained.
"[I]t should be and is fair to challenge the results" of CBO scores, he said. He added that is "especially true when the CBO has exhibited a history of flawed analysis and inaccurate findings."