For a guy who couldn’t get approved for the Ambassador to the U.N. years ago, couldn’t get approved for anything since, “begged” me for a non Senate approved job, which I gave him despite many saying “Don’t do it, sir,” takes the job, mistakenly says “Libyan Model” on T.V., and..— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 29, 2020
Trump was warned not to make Sessions the AG, and look what happened--Sessions promised Schumer to recuse. Later Trump said he gave the job to Sessions out of a misguided sense of loyalty. OK, shame on Sessions. Maybe.....many more mistakes of judgement, gets fired because frankly, if I listened to him, we would be in World War Six by now, and goes out and IMMEDIATELY writes a nasty & untrue book. All Classified National Security. Who would do this?— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 29, 2020
Now, however, Trump is telling us that he was warned not to appoint a known idiot like Bolton but went ahead and did it because ... Bolton begged him? Shame on Trump!
UPDATE: The Spectator has a nice article about Bolton that explains why people were telling Trump: Don't do it! Don't appoint Bolton!
Far from damning Trump, his intervention suggests the president was acting in a reasonable manner
The author, Daniel McCarthy, points out that in the NYT leak article, Trump is cited by Bolton as wanting Ukraine to investigate far more than just Biden--for Trump the investigation wasn't about narrow political advantage against a rival. And that's what has Dems all in a lather:
Joe Biden was supposed to be Trump’s target, and the way to weaken Biden was by getting Ukraine to announce an investigation involving Biden’s son. But on Bolton’s account, that isn’t what Trump was doing: the key words in the Times report are ‘Democrats’ — plural — ‘including the Bidens’. Not even Adam Schiff has alleged that Trump wanted Ukraine to investigate Pete Buttigieg or Bernie Sanders. If Trump wanted investigations into multiple Democrats, only one of whom had a link to the 2020 election, it can hardly be said that swaying the election was his clear motive.
Bolton’s account, if the Times report is accurate, in fact supports the evidence that President Trump himself released in response to the initial whistleblower complaint — the write-up of his July 25 call with Ukraine’s President Zelensky. When Trump said during that call, ‘I would like you to do us a favor though’ (in response to Zelensky inquiring about the aid) his next words were ‘because our country has been through a lot and Ukraine knows a lot about it.’ He subsequently makes clear what he means: Trump believes that a wealthy Ukrainian connected with the US cybersecurity firm Crowdstrike may possess a Democratic National Committee computer server that was hacked during the 2016 presidential election. Rudy Giluiani, who is referenced in the call, was Trump’s point man for investigating this — and Giuliani and his shady Ukrainian associates, such as Lev Parnas, were probably responsible for reinforcing the president’s belief in the ‘missing server’, if they weren’t the ones who got him to buy into the story in the first place.
The plural ‘Democrats’ of the Times report on Bolton’s book are the Democrats of 2016 — the Clinton campaign and the DNC. Joe Biden’s role in the dismissal of a Ukrainian prosecutor during the Obama years also comes up in Trump’s call with Zelensky, with Trump claiming that Biden had boasted of having the man dismissed in order to forestall a prosecution of his son. President Trump’s account of all this is garbled. But there is no reason to think that it’s insincere. If Trump just wanted to embarrass a 2020 rival, he sure went about doing it in the most convoluted possible way. If, on the other hand, Trump really did think that Ukraine had meddled in the 2016 election and bore some responsibility for the claims at the heart of the Mueller investigation, then his interest in uncovering multiple ties between Democrats and Ukraine makes good sense. His premises may be flawed, but his conclusion follows from them simply and honestly. And if a foreign government and an American political party were in cahoots, that would merit an investigation, especially before turning over US taxpayer resources to the country in question.