United States President Donald Trump allegedly sought help with his re-election from China at the G20 Summit in Japan last year, according to former National Security Adviser John Bolton.
Bolton, who held the office from April 2018 until September 2019, will be releasing his book, The Room Where It Happened, on 23 June. In the 577-page tell-all, he reveals several highly embarrassing details about the way that Trump runs the White House, with one particular anecdote standing out above the rest – his June 2019 meeting with President Xi in Osaka.
“Trump, stunningly, turned the conversation to the coming US presidential election [in 2020], alluding to China’s economic capability and pleading with Xi to ensure he’d win,” Mr Bolton wrote, according to BBC.
“He stressed the importance of farmers and increased Chinese purchases of soybeans and wheat in the electoral outcome.”
Farmers make up a particularly prominent demographic in Trump’s support base and played a major role in his 2016 election victory.
Bolton also mentions that another topic of conversation between Trump and Xi was the construction of the Xinjiang re-education camps that have been opened for the purpose of indoctrinating Uyghurs since 2017, with Trump encouraging the practice, saying it was “exactly the right thing to do”.
However, US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer has denied Mr Bolton’s accusations, saying the request for help with re-election “never happened”.
However, this is just one damning account of Trump’s actions while Bolton served as the National Security Advisor. Among the accusations are that Trump was played like a puppet when Russian President Vladimir Putin defended his ally, Nicolas Maduro, when he likened Venezuelan opposition leader Juan Guaidó to Hillary Clinton, which “largely persuaded Trump” in a “brilliant display of Soviet-style propaganda”. Trump imposed sanctions on Venezuela and labeled Maduro a dictator, but the Venezuelan president still held onto power.
Trump also was apparently unaware that the United Kingdom is a nuclear power. “Oh, are you a nuclear power?” Trump allegedly said in a meeting with then Prime Minister, Theresa May, in 2018. Mr Bolton said he could tell it “was not intended as a joke”.
Bolton has also confirmed that Trump pressured Ukraine to release damning evidence on Joe Biden by withholding military aid. Bolton has faced a lot of criticism for not testifying in February’s impeachment hearings, but he claims that he doesn’t believe it was an impeachable offence.
Bolton’s book looks to be a truly devastating account on Trump’s administration that will bring many details of his willingness to bend foreign policy to advance his domestic and personal political agenda as well as his sheer incompetence to light mere months before the presidential elections are set to take place.
As a result, Trump has dismissed Bolton’s allegations.
“He broke the law. This is highly classified information and he did not have approval,” he told Fox News. “He was a washed up guy. I gave him a chance.”
In fact, the Trump administration has even sought an emergency order from a judge on Wednesday evening to halt the distribution of Bolton’s book.
Publishers, Simon & Schuster, responded with a statement saying, “Tonight’s filing by the government is a frivolous, politically motivated exercise in futility.”