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Evan Vucci / AP

Ambassador John Bolton, a Trump ally who has been considered for top national security posts in the administration, says he now needs to resort to publishing advice in the National Review because he can't get in to see the president under the regime of new Chief of Staff John Kelly.

Bolton published today what he described as a "game plan" for Trump to exit the Iran nuclear deal struck by President Obama.

Along with the 5 page memo, Bolton wrote these eye-popping lines:

Many outside the administration wondered how this was possible: Was Trump in control, or were his advisers? Defining a compelling rationale to exit Obama's failed nuclear deal and elaborating a game plan to do so are quite easy. In fact, Steve Bannon asked me in late July to draw up just such a game plan for the president — the option he didn't have — which I did.I offer the Iran nonpaper now as a public service, since staff changes at the White House have made presenting it to President Trump impossible. Although he was once kind enough to tell me "come in and see me any time," those days are now over.

I called Bolton this afternoon to ask him about his comments. He said that he requested a meeting with the president "through the correct channels" but the request was denied. Bolton wouldn't elaborate further.

Why this matters: The new strict system imposed by John Kelly will work until close allies can't get through to the president. If Trump begins to feel cut off from people he once spoke to often, he could buck against the new order.

Counterpoint: Based on information they've been receiving from the intelligence community, White House officials are expected to consider Bolton's advice as simplistic and unhelpful. The reason they say they've advised President Trump to re-certify the Iran nuclear deal even though he doesn't want to is because they say the intelligence community doesn't have the evidence required to prove Iran has been noncompliant. Also, it's unlikely that any of Trump's top national security and foreign policy advisers will buy into Bolton's idea that you can rally the international community behind a U.S. withdrawal from the deal.

Bolton's retort is that the current line of thinking will inevitably lead to Iran developing nuclear weapons. Bolton has readily admitted that U.S. or Israeli military action may be the only way to ultimately prevent Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons.

Go deeper

Top economic regulators stressed by vacancies

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The boom times are all around us (from corporate deal sprees to the breakneck rise of cryptocurrency) — and the agencies in charge are stretched thin trying to police it.

Why it matters: Overwhelmed staff and a slew of vacant posts could set back President Biden's big regulatory agenda.

GOP Sen. Chuck Grassley announces run for re-election

Photo: Greg Nash/The Hill/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), the longest-serving Senate Republican, announced on Friday that he's running for re-election in 2022.

Why it matters: The GOP is looking to regain control of both chambers of Congress in the upcoming midterm elections. Several Republicans had urged the 88-year-old senator to run to avoid another retirement after five incumbent senators said they wouldn't seek re-election.

China deems all cryptocurrency transactions illegal

A person walking past China's central bank in Beijing in August 2007. Photo: Teh Eng Koon/AFP via Getty Images

China's central bank declared on Friday that all cryptocurrencies are illegal, banning crypto-related transactions and cryptocurrency mining, according to Reuters.

Why it matters: China's government is now following through with its goal of cracking down on unofficial virtual currencies, which it has said are a financial, social and national security risk and a contributor to global warming.

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