Ex-national security adviser John Bolton responds to Trump's tweets about his memoir

Bolton said he thinks Trump is worried about Americans reading his book.

June 18, 2020, 7:30 PM

John Bolton fired back at Donald Trump on Thursday after the president unleashed a firestorm of critical tweets about his former national security adviser and his new book, "The Room Where it Happened."

"I think it's unbecoming of the Office of President," Bolton said Thursday. "I think it degrades the political civil discourse in our country and [I'm] just not going to respond to him."

Trump called Bolton a "sick puppy" and a "wacko" on Twitter and said his new memoir -- set to be released next week -- is "a compilation of lies and made up stories."

The attacks from Trump come at the same time as his administration is fighting in court to halt the release of the book, claiming it contains classified information.

"The president isn't worried about foreign governments reading this book. He's worried about the American people reading this book," Bolton told ABC News about the book.

Now the Department of Justice has been granted an emergency hearing Friday by a federal district court judge in Washington, D.C., on their application for temporary restraining order blocking the book's scheduled release next Tuesday because of its alleged national security risk.

"When I wrote the book, to begin with, I was very conscious to avoid putting in anything that I thought could be deemed classifiable, and I didn't think I had to put the book through the pre-publication clearance process for that reason," Bolton explained. "But we did out of an abundance of caution and then went through four arduous months of making sure there was nothing classified and I believe that strongly today."

ABC's Martha Raddatz will have the first exclusive interview with John Bolton, former National Security Advisor to President Donald Trump, on his new book, "The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir," airing June 21, 2020 at 9pm ET on ABC.
ABC News

Bolton added that months ago Trump "said he intended to make sure this book did not come out before the election, and he knows why."

"Because he knows it will be factual and he doesn't want the facts out on the record," Bolton said plainly.

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