Bolton in Fox News interview accuses Trump of ‘reprehensible conduct’, denies violating registration law

Former national security adviser John Bolton defended his decision to write a report on his time in the Trump administration and denied having violated record-keeping laws by destroying his notes while in the White House, as he accused President Trump of “Reprehensible conduct” during a Fox News interview.

Bolton gave the interview in Fox News’ “Special Report with Bret Baier”, just when his memoirs “The Room Where It Happened” will be published to the public.

Bolton, an avid note taker, was asked how he filled the 500 pages of his book if he destroyed his notes during his tenure in the White House.

“I am blessed with a pretty good memory,” Bolton said.

Baier then asked Bolton if burning his notes had violated the Presidential Records Act, which requires the preservation of all presidential records.

“No, I don’t think these are records that were supposed to be kept,” Bolton replied. “Many other people followed the same pattern.”


Baier asked Bolton why not only Republicans but Democrats like Nancy Pelosi and Adam Schiff considered Bolton’s decision to write a book after refusing to testify in the impeachment investigation was “unpatriotic.”

Bolton said he thought the impeachment process was doomed from the start because of its partisan nature. He said the Democrats “were driven by their own political goals to go after Trump as quickly as they could and as narrowly as they could because they were worried about ruining their own presidential nomination schedule.”

“I am not saying that he should have been charged,” Bolton said of the president. “I’m saying there is a lot of reprehensible conduct, not all of which is impeccable. The fact is, the Democrats were following a strategy that was clearly falling into a ditch.”

Bolton noted that House Democrats never issued him a subpoena to testify, but they did so to all who testified. “This is something that I think a lot of people don’t understand, they never issued me a subpoena,” he said.

“For me, a partisan race to use the impeachment mechanism does not require everyone else to make the same mistake,” added the former national security adviser.

Bolton also accused Secretary of State Mike Pompeo of accepting Trump’s views to aid his political ambitions. In his book, Bolton said that Pompeo often shared his views on issues like China, North Korea, and Iran, the same national security issues in which Bolton often collided with the president and ultimately led to his resignation.

“Even on issues where he thought the president was moving in the wrong direction, he just stopped trying to persuade him, stopped trying to fix what was clearly a problem. And I think his political future is closely tied to the Trump administration, “Bolton said of Pompeo in the interview.

Bolton said he had drafted his resignation for a long time, but the “straw that broke the glass” was Trump’s decision to invite the Taliban to Camp David to negotiate an Afghan peace deal. Trump later announced that he suspended the meeting after the Taliban claimed responsibility for a car bomb that killed a US soldier, a Romanian soldier and 10 civilians in Kabul in September.

Baier noted that Bolton has said he will not vote for Trump or Democrat Joe Biden in this year’s presidential election, but will write to another conservative. He asked the former national security adviser who would be better at foreign policy between Trump and Biden. “I don’t think there is any way to know,” Bolton said.


“I have known Joe Biden for a long, long time and have been on the opposite side of every issue,” he said. “I care about both of us. From my perspective, this is a terrible choice.” Instead, Bolton said he will dedicate his time after the book’s release to work to maintain Republican control of the Senate, which he said is “critical if Trump wins or if Biden wins.”

“The difference between [Joe] Biden and Trump is that Biden has an opinion, and Trump does not have an opinion, “Bolton said, linking Trump’s perceived erratism to the coronavirus pandemic.” On any day, any decision is possible. And that seems scary to me. I think the coronavirus response shows exactly the kind of fear I am. “

Bolton continued, saying that “the response was choppy, inconsistent, sporadic, and not as effective as it could have been.” He later warned that this “only gives a preview of what could happen in an even more serious crisis.”

Still, Bolton said he doesn’t regret his time in the Trump administration.

“No, I’m not coming back and I guess my decisions. I did the best I could, and I had the opportunity to do it again, ”said the former national security adviser. “I am sure I made many mistakes, I have no doubts about that, I wish I could correct them in retrospect. But I think the kind of security for the United States that I defend is the mainstream of the Republican Party, and my disappointment is that Trump is so far away. ”