John R. Bolton

Bolton resigned after Trump suggested relieving Iranian sanctions

In this image, Bolton adjusts his glasses.
John Bolton meets with Belarus' president on August 29. Photo: Yuri Oreshkin\TASS via Getty Images

Former national security adviser John Bolton resigned the day after a Monday discussion about Iran policy in which President Trump raised the possibility of relieving some sanctions, a person close to Bolton tells Axios.

What happened: Bolton did not favor giving the Iranians relief and believed the maximum pressure campaign was working, the person, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said.

Expert Voices

Trump and Democrats may find more foreign policy overlap post-Bolton

Donald Trump seated in the Oval Office
President Trump in the Oval Office. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

John Bolton’s departure from the White House has deepened uncertainty in Washington about how the White House plans to handle a myriad of pressing national security issues.

The big picture: From the war in Afghanistan to North Korea’s nuclear program to pressure on Iran, the partnership of President Trump and his most recent national security adviser, while uneasy, was relatively predictable. On several of those issues, Trump may now angle for policies more in line with Democrats' policy positions.