Former national security adviser John Bolton has refused House demands that he testify on the events surrounding the freezing of military aid to Ukraine and the efforts by Donald Trump’s allies and administration officials to pressure the Ukrainian government into announcing an investigation into potential Trump election opponent Joe Biden. Bolton is instead writing a book on his tenure.
In the now-circulating manuscript for that unreleased book, reports The New York Times, Bolton writes that Donald Trump personally told him he would continue to freeze the nearly $400 million in aid until Ukrainian officials aided his desired investigations into “Democrats” and “the Bidens.”
Bolton’s manuscript alleges direct involvement in the scheme to falsely smear and remove U.S. Ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney, reports The Times, and Pompeo both knew the claims to be false and suspected Giuliani was “acting on behalf of other clients.” Bolton also says he personally spoke with Trump Attorney General William Barr to inform Barr that Trump had identified him as part of Rudy Giuliani’s efforts on his now-infamous call with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky: Barr’s office had previously denied that he knew about that call until much later.
Importantly, The Times reports that the Trump White House was sent the manuscript for a standard pre-publication administration review in “recent weeks”—meaning Trump, his legal team, and others implicated have known what Bolton would testify to during this period in which they have loudly and angrily insisted that the Senate call no witnesses. If the White House has intentionally delayed or frozen the book’s publication in an attempt to block it until after the conclusion of the Senate impeachment trial, it could constitute yet another act meant to obstruct justice.
Published with permission from Daily Kos.