Nov 10, 2019

Bolton signs $2 million book deal

John Bolton, then-national security adviser, gives a press conference in Jerusalem in 2018. Photo: Sebastian Scheiner/AFP via Getty Images

Former National Security Adviser John Bolton has signed a book deal with Simon & Schuster "worth about $2 million," AP first reported Saturday. Sources confirmed the deal to Axios' Jonathan Swan, who scooped last month that Bolton had decided to write a book about his time in the Trump administration.

Why it matters: Bolton has largely remained silent on his time in the administration and he did not appear for his closed-door deposition in the impeachment inquiry last Thursday.

  • Trump's former Russia adviser Fiona Hill testified last month that Bolton told a top Russia aide to notify White House lawyers about a campaign to pressure the Ukrainian government to investigate the Biden family and the 2016 election.
  • Bolton was "part of many relevant meetings and conversations" relating to the impeachment inquiry, his lawyer said Friday, per AP.
  • Given that Bolton "wrote a book about his tenure in the George W. Bush administration, from the moment he left the White House, senior officials privately expressed concerns about what Bolton might say and reveal about his time serving Trump," Swan notes.

The big picture: AP notes that Bolton "was represented by the Javelin literary agency, whose clients include former FBI Director James Comey and the anonymous Trump administration official whose book, 'A Warning,' comes out Nov. 19."

  • Bolton's book title and release date have yet to be revealed.

Go deeper

Trump aides fear John Bolton's secret notes

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

John Bolton is the impeachment inquiry's biggest wildcard. People around the president say they are worried about what notes Trump's former national security adviser has kept and when he might divulge them.

Why it matters: These sources, including both current and former senior administration officials, tell me that the former national security adviser was the most prolific note-taker at the top level of the White House and probably has more details than any impeachment inquiry witness, so far, about President Trump's machinations on Ukraine.

Go deeperArrowNov 10, 2019

Official testifies Bolton held 1-on-1 meeting with Trump about Ukraine aid

Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

Former White House national security adviser John Bolton met privately with President Trump in August in an effort to convince him to release nearly $400 million in frozen military aid to Ukraine, former National Security Council official Tim Morrison told impeachment investigators last month.

Why it matters: The episode underscores how important Bolton's testimony could ultimately be to determining why Trump withheld security assistance to Ukraine at a time when he was pushing its government to investigate his political rivals — a question at the heart of the impeachment inquiry.

Go deeperArrowNov 17, 2019

John Bolton lays into Trump's foreign policy approach in private speech

Former national security adviser John Bolton at the Center for Strategic and International Studies in September. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

Former national security adviser John Bolton suggested in a private speech last week that President Trump's experience as a businessman colors his relationships with foreign leaders — often for the worse, NBC News reports, citing six people who were there.

Between the lines: Bolton suggested that Trump believes his personal chemistry with foreign leaders, including authoritarians like Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, means that the U.S. relationship with those countries is a positive one, a source in the room told Axios' Jonathan Swan.

Go deeperArrowNov 12, 2019