By Robert A. Vella
Shortly after the White House and Department of Justice filed lawsuits to prevent former National Security Advisor John Bolton from publishing his tell-all book about President Trump, copies of the book were leaked to the media. Reports of the contents were by no means surprising because Trump’s corrupt behavior was already obvious to say the least; however, the reporting is quite detailed and it contains some new revelations. To say that Bolton “nuked” his former boss is no exaggeration. The book paints a vivid picture of a president whose narcissism repeatedly crossed the line into criminality, and whose incompetence made him totally unfit for the office he still holds.
But, Bolton is no hero here. Had he been motivated solely by duty to his country, he would have agreed to testify before the House of Representatives’ impeachment inquiry and/or he would have released this information about Trump immediately after Republicans in the Senate refused to allow witnesses in the impeachment trial. Instead, Bolton is spilling the beans not when it mattered most to the nation but many months afterwards so that he can cash-in on a reported $2 million book deal. Because of that, Bolton’s criticism of House Democrats as focusing too much on the Ukraine scandal during impeachment is hypocritical at best. If he thought Trump’s other offenses were impeachable, then he should have testified before their committees.
Regardless, there are three potential consequences from this story which are the most politically relevant ahead of the 2020 elections:
- Bolton’s confirmation of the impeachment charges is a damning condemnation of Senate Republicans (except Mitt Romney) who rammed-through a sham impeachment trial to protect Trump.
- The book completely destroys Trump’s tough-on-China campaign strategy because it exposed his quid pro quo solicitation of Chinese officials to assist his reelection effort (which is the same crime he was impeached for when he tried to extort Ukraine’s government).
- The timing of the book’s release couldn’t come at a worse time for Trump. Despite all his “Teflon Don” escapes from justice and accountability, Trump is at his lowest point only 4 ½ months before the election after massive public backlashes against his failed pandemic response and his reviled stance on racial injustice; and, the pressure is taking its toll on him (more on that later).
Also today, we’ll cover the U.S. Supreme Court upholding President Obama’s DACA program to allow immigrant children to remain in the country, two white Atlanta police officers who have been criminally charged in the murder of a black man who had fallen asleep in his car at a fast food take-out line, plus a bunch of coronavirus and international news.
Bolton nukes Trump
John R. Bolton, the former national security adviser, plans to publish a damning book next week depicting President Trump as a corrupt, poorly informed, reckless leader who used the power of his office to advance his own personal and political needs even ahead of the nation’s interests.
The book, “The Room Where It Happened,” describes Mr. Bolton’s 17 turbulent months at Mr. Trump’s side through a multitude of crises and foreign policy challenges, but attention has focused mainly on his assertions that the president took a variety of actions that should have been investigated for possible impeachment beyond just the pressure campaign on Ukraine to incriminate Democrats.
Mr. Bolton, who did not testify during House proceedings and whose offer to testify in the Senate trial was blocked by Republicans, confirms many crucial elements of the Ukraine scheme that got Mr. Trump impeached in December. He also asserts that the president was willing to intervene in criminal investigations to curry favor with foreign dictators. And he says that Mr. Trump pleaded with China’s president to help him win re-election by buying American crops grown in key farm states.
President Trump asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to help him win the 2020 U.S. election, telling Xi during a summit dinner last year that increased agricultural purchases by Beijing from American farmers would aid his electoral prospects, according to a damning new account of life inside the Trump administration by former national security adviser John Bolton.
And on the Ukraine scandal itself, Bolton cites personal conversations with Trump confirming a “quid pro quo” that Trump had long denied, including an August meeting in which Trump allegedly made the bargain explicit.“He said he wasn’t in favor of sending them anything until all Russia-investigation material related to [Hillary] Clinton and Biden had been turned over,” Bolton writes.
From: China Slams Trump Over Uighur Law Amid Bolton Accusations [clarification by The Secular Jurist]
China lashed out at the United States on Thursday after President Trump signed into law a bill that would allow him to impose sanctions on Chinese officials involved in the mass incarceration of more than one million Uighurs and members of other largely Muslim minorities in the western region of Xinjiang.
On Wednesday, the same day Mr. Trump signed the legislation, Mr. Bolton accused the president of once supporting Beijing’s crackdown in Xinjiang. In an excerpt from his forthcoming book, published in The Wall Street Journal, Mr. Bolton said Mr. Trump had questioned why the United States would impose sanctions on the Chinese officials involved.
In a private meeting with Mr. Xi at the Group of 20 meeting in Japan last year, Mr. Bolton wrote, the president even accepted the rationale of Xi Jinping, China’s top leader, for the creation of a vast system of [concentration] camps and surveillance in Xinjiang.
“According to our interpreter, Trump said that Xi should go ahead with building the camps, which Trump thought was exactly the right thing to do,” Mr. Bolton wrote.
Mr. Bolton’s account underscored the jarring contradictions of Mr. Trump’s policies toward China, which have confused and angered the Chinese leadership. The administration has strongly criticized China, most recently for its aggressive move to limit Hong Kong’s autonomy and for its handling of the coronavirus pandemic, which has now killed more than 117,000 Americans and infected more than two million.
“I think Putin thinks he can play him like a fiddle. I think Putin is– smart, tough. He plays a bad hand extremely well. And I think — I — I think he sees that — he’s not faced with a serious adversary here,” Bolton said in the exclusive interview.
Bolton is is scheduled to release on June 23an explosive book about his 17 months in the White House, in which he paints Trump as “stunningly uninformed,” ignorant of basic facts and easily manipulated by foreign adversaries.
“When you’re dealing with somebody like Putin, who has made his life understanding Russia’s strategic position in the world, against Donald Trump, who doesn’t enjoy reading about these issues or learning about them, it’s a very difficult position for America to be in,” Bolton told ABC News chief global affairs correspondent Martha Raddatz.
The top Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee plans to call on former national security advisor John Bolton to provide information on his claim that President Trump agreed to intervene in a federal investigation into a Turkish company at the request of Turkey’s president.
Bolton, in an upcoming book about his experience during the Trump administration, claims Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan delivered a memo to Trump in which the Turkish leader defended a firm from his country that was under investigation by the Southern District of New York for potential violations of Iranian sanctions.
Trump, according to a copy of the book seen by The Hill, agreed to “take care of things” and said the prosecutors from the Southern District of New York were “Obama people.” The contents of Bolton’s book were first reported by The Washington Post and The New York Times.
Trump pleaded with China to help win the 2020 election
Trump suggested he was open to serving more than two terms
Trump offered favors to dictators
Trump praised President Xi for China’s concentration camps
Trump defended Saudi Arabia to distract from a story about Ivanka
Trump’s top staff mocked him behind his back
Trump thought Finland was part of Russia
Trump thought it would be ‘cool’ to invade Venezuela
In a recent meeting with his top political advisers, President Trump was impatient as they warned him that he was on a path to defeat in November if he continued his incendiary behavior in public and on Twitter.
Mr. Trump pushed back against his aides. “I have to be myself,” he replied, according to three people familiar with the meeting. A few hours later, he posted on Twitter a letter from his former personal lawyer describing some of the protesters as “terrorists.”
Mr. Trump doesn’t want to be seen as a “loser,” a label he detests, in the campaign against former Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. And some advisers believe Mr. Trump’s taste for battle will return in the fall, when the general election fight is more engaged.
But for now, they said, the president is acting trapped and defensive, and his self-destructive behavior has been so out of step for an incumbent in an election year that many advisers wonder if he is truly interested in serving a second term.
SCOTUS upholds DACA
Atlanta cops charged
Garrett Rolfe faces felony murder and 10 other charges after he shot Brooks at a Wendy’s drive-through last week. Prosecutors allege that he declared, “I got him” after firing the shots and he did not provide medical attention for 2 minutes and 12 seconds.
“That officer … actually kicked Mr. Brooks while he laid on the ground, while he was there fighting for his life,” Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard said.
The second officer, Devin Brosnan, faces an aggravated assault charge for allegedly standing on the prostrate Brooks’ shoulders in the parking lot. Arrest warrants have been issued, and they have until Thursday evening to turn themselves in.