Former National Security Adviser John Bolton Plans to Release Tell-All Book — But the White House May Block It
Former National Security Adviser John Bolton is planning to release a book later this month, a reportedly scathing tell-all about his time in President Donald Trump‘s administration — if the White House doesn’t block its release.
The Washington Post reported the story Sunday evening, noting that Bolton’s current plan is to release his book, titled “The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir,” on June 23rd, with a promotional media tour the week before.
Bolton was Trump’s National Security Adviser from April 2018 to September 2019. He previously served as U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations for former President George W. Bush from August 2005 to December 2006.
Bolton’s tenure in the Trump administration had a bumpy exit. In May 2019, the New York Times reported that Trump was overhead by guests at Mar-a-Lago complaining about Bolton’s advice, and the president publicly contradicted his adviser on key issues regarding Iran, Afghanistan, and North Korea.
Finally, on September 9, 2019, Bolton offered to resign. The next day, Trump tweeted that he was firing Bolton, which Bolton quickly denied, texting several reporters that he had, in fact, resigned the night before.
Ambassador Bolton sends me a text message just now: “Let’s be clear, I resigned, having offered to do so last night.”
— Robert Costa (@costareports) September 10, 2019
In the months since, Trump has periodically mocked Bolton — especially his trademark mustache — and it’s widely assumed that the White House is unhappy about Bolton’s book. Previous news reports have described Trump as referring to Bolton as a “traitor” for writing the book, and attempting to pressure him to wait until after the November election to release it.
High-level government officials often are required to sign nondisclosure agreements, and Bolton is no exception. He has retained a lawyer named Charles Cooper to help guide him through the prepublication process, which included submitting the manuscript to the National Security Council on December 30, to review for any classified material.
Bolton has bristled at the continued delays getting the official approval for the release of his book, reportedly telling people that he believes the book is being held up for political reasons.
If Bolton is determined to release the book without waiting for the administration’s approval, there is little they could do to stop him, but they could cause his security clearance to be revoked or be force him to forgo any profits from the book.
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