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Trump Held An Executive Order Signing Ceremony, Then Walked Away Without Signing Anything

"So, he didn't sign them?" one puzzled reporter asked.

Posted on March 31, 2017, at 10:48 p.m. ET

President Trump held an executive order signing ceremony in the Oval Office on Friday where he planned to sign two orders that he said would start a “great revival” of US manufacturing.

Andrew Harnik / AP

"Thank you everybody," he said, speaking from the podium. "You're going to be seeing some very, very strong results very, very quickly. Thank you very much."

Andrew Harnik / AP

A reporter then tried to ask the president about Michael Flynn, his former national security adviser, who has offered to testify on the Trump campaign's ties with Russia in return for immunity from prosecution.

Andrew Harnik / AP

But Trump was in no mood to answer questions and bolted for the door.

Andrew Harnik / AP

And there sat the two executive orders on his desk, unsigned.

Andrew Harnik / AP

The two orders targeted trade deficits, a topic that Trump promised to tackle repeatedly throughout his campaign.

One was designed to identify trade deficits by country and by product, while the other aimed to increase the collection of duties and imports.

Vice President Mike Pence then chased after Trump to try to stop him on his way out, pointing out that the orders were still waiting to be signed at his desk.

Andrew Harnik / AP

But Trump told Pence to grab the orders and he'd sign them out of view of the press.

Andrew Harnik / AP

So there went Pence...

Andrew Harnik / AP

... all the way back to the president's desk to pick up the orders.

Andrew Harnik / AP

After Pence exited the room with the orders, confused reporters could be overheard wondering what was going on.

"So, he didn't sign them?" one puzzled reporter was heard asking.

"He did not sign them," another responded.

"He did not sign," another concluded.

The entire awkward moment can be seen here.

Pool via Politico

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.