During an interview with Fox News’ Sean Hannity on Wednesday, President Donald Trump took aim at former White House National Security Advisor John Bolton, who is releasing a tell-all memoir, The Room Where It Happened, next week. As reported by Breitbart, Trump accused Bolton of breaking the law by leaking classified information in his forthcoming book.
“He broke the law, he was a washed-up guy,” Trump said. “I gave him a chance, he couldn’t get Senate-confirmed, so I gave him a non-Senate-confirmed position where I could just put him there, to see how he worked. I wasn’t very enamored.”
Trump previously claimed that Bolton could face charges and appeared to double down on his comments on Hannity.
“He broke the law, very simple, as much as it’s going to be broken this is highly classified. And he did not have approval, and that’s coming out very loud and very strong.”
While speaking with Hannity, Trump also pushed back on how Bolton painted his relationships with world dictators, such as Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping, and noted the former White House official’s history of advocacy for the Iraq War.
“He was one of the big guns … that didn’t work out too well,” Trump said.
In particular, Trump noted that Bolton defended America’s military intervention in Iraq during his time in the administration.
Although Trump has claimed Bolton could face charges for his memoir, he acknowledged that the decision to pursue them is up to Attorney General William Barr. According to Barr, the Department of Justice does not believe that Bolton went through the proper pre-publication review process to determine the absence of classified information. But one of Bolton’s attorneys, Charles Cooper, pushed back on these claims and said that the White House’s calls for a review of Bolton’s manuscript are a ploy to delay the release of the book, which reportedly has a wealth of damning information on Trump.
As reported by Bloomberg News, the book’s publisher, Simon & Schuster, released a statement that denounced the Trump administration’s attempt to acquire an emergency restraining order to halt publication of the memoir. The publisher called the filing a “frivolous, politically motivated exercise in futility” and claimed that hundreds of thousands of copies of Bolton’s book have already been distributed around the United States and the surrounding world.
Bolton is set to appear on ABC News on Sunday to speak with the network’s Chief of Global Affairs Correspondent Martha Raddatz about the information in the memoir.
EXCLUSIVE: He's the man President Trump doesn't want you to hear.
Now, John Bolton, Trump’s former trusted national security advisor, finally speaks out. What will he say? Don’t miss this news making event special – Sunday night at 9|8c on @ABC. pic.twitter.com/VCHtkFPoCp
— ABC News (@ABC) June 16, 2020