Rep. Schiff refuses to say if Intel Committee would subpoena Bolton over claims of Ukraine pressure

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., the lead Democratic manager, leaves the Senate chamber during a break as the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump on charges of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress stretches into the night, in Washington, Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

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UPDATED 10:13 AM PT — Monday, February 3, 2020

House Intelligence Committee chairman and lead impeachment manager Adam Schiff has continued to stir speculation of John Bolton’s possible testimony in Congress.

In an interview Sunday, he refused to say if his committee would subpoena the former national security adviser to testify on his book after the impeachment trial ends. The California Democrat also suggested the truth of the alleged pressure on Ukraine would eventually come out.

The Senate voted to block additional witnesses in the trial last week, which has further paved the way to the president’s acquittal. Nonetheless, Rep. Schiff said getting Bolton to testify may turn into a lengthy process.

“If we continue with litigation, as we are doing at this moment with Don McGahn, and we subpoenaed him nine months ago and we’re still nowhere near a final resolution, it would probably be one to two years before we would have had a decision on John Bolton,” he explained.

Rep. Schiff also accused Senate Republicans of denying a fair impeachment trial and vowed to continue attacks on President Trump.

FILE – In this May 1, 2019 file photo, National security adviser John Bolton talks to reporters outside the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

RELATED: Rep. Meadows says impeachment acquittal timing uncertain

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Robert O’Brien ‘very confident’ Bolton’s book was not leaked by National Security Council

Robert C. O’Brien, left, United States National Security Advisor, and Richard Grenell, right, United States Ambassador to Germany, address the media during a press conference in Berlin, Germany, Monday, Jan. 20, 2020 prior to the signing of an agreement between Kosovo and Serbia, establishing air service between the two capitals. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

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UPDATED 12:40 PM PT — Sunday, February 2, 2020

White House National Security Adviser Robert O’Brien is saying the transcript of John Bolton’s book was not leaked by the National Security Council (NSC). On Sunday, O’Brien said he’s discussed Bolton’s book and its recent leak to the press with members of the council. He assured the public he’s very confident the leak did not come from the NSC.

Last month, leaked excerpts from the book alleged President Trump could have had an intent to pressure Ukraine, which fueled Democrats’ calls for impeachment. O’Brien said the NSC believes Bolton’s book includes classified materials and cannot be published as is.

“I think that’s something that’s going to be investigated, what kind of notes Ambassador Bolton has, had or didn’t have. With respect to the allegation that Ambassador Bolton made, that he told (President Trump) him to call Zelensky, the president has said that did not happen. I believe that Bill Barr and Mike Pompeo have said that that did not happen.” – Robert O’Brien, United States National Security Adviser

The adviser said the NSC will continue discussions with Bolton to make sure the upcoming release of his book does not compromise any national security secrets.

RELATED: President Trump Denies NYT Report Stating He Directed Bolton To Work With Giuliani

Original Article

Bolton’s interview from 2019 describes Ukraine call as ‘warm and cordial,’ ‘no sign of pressure’

FILE – In this May 1, 2019 file photo, National security adviser John Bolton talks to reporters outside the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 5:50 PM PT — Wednesday, January 29, 2020

A 2019 interview with former National Security Advisor John Bolton has resurfaced online. The video revealed the former adviser’s assessment of the July 25th Ukraine phone call before he was fired from the White House. In August of last year, Bolton told Radio Liberty President Trump had spoken with Ukraine’s president twice and assured audiences that both conversations were friendly.

“The president called to congratulate President Zelensky on his election and on his success in the parliamentary elections,” he said. “They were warm and cordial calls.”

Bolton recently claimed President Trump may have intended to pressure Ukraine to investigate the Bidens. However, at the time of the call, the former adviser didn’t mention any signs of alleged “pressure.”

“We’re hoping that they’ll be able to meet in Warsaw and have a few minutes together,” he said. “The success of Ukraine, maintaining its freedom, its system of representative government, freed market economy free of corruption…are high priorities for the United States.”

Bolton’s remarks from last year also refuted Democrats’ claims that the president abandoned Ukraine to help Russia.

President Donald Trump meets with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy at the InterContinental Barclay New York hotel during the United Nations General Assembly, Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2019, in New York. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

President Trump posted his reaction to the video on Twitter, saying, “Game over!”

RELATED: White House: Bolton’s Book Contains ‘Significant Amounts Of Classified Information’

Original Article

White House: Bolton’s book contains ‘significant amounts of classified information’

FILE – In this March 5, 2019 file photo, national security adviser John Bolton adjusts his glasses before an interview at the White House in Washington. (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 3:13 PM PT — Wednesday, January 29, 2020

The White House has issued a formal notice to former National Security Advisor John Bolton regarding the classified information found in the manuscript of his upcoming book. In a letter to Bolton’s attorney last week, a National Security Council official said the manuscript contains significant amounts of classified and top secret information.

The official emphasized that under federal law and nondisclosure agreements Bolton signed, the manuscript may not be published or disclosed until the classified information has been removed. According to the letter, the manuscript is still under review as officials assist the former adviser in identifying classified information.

President Trump ripped into Bolton following reports on the contents of his upcoming book.

In a series of tweets, he took shots at the former adviser’s career. The president claimed Bolton couldn’t get approved for the UN ambassador job and begged him for the NSA position, despite objections from other advisers.

President Trump also called out when he mistakenly said the “Libyan model” on TV while referring to North Korea. He added, “If I listened to him, we would be in World War Six by now.”

The president then blasted his new book, calling the allegations leveled in it “nasty and untrue.”

The book reportedly claimed that last year, President Trump wanted to withhold military aid to Ukraine until their government agreed to investigate Democrats who wronged him in 2016, including the Bidens.

The president denied Bolton’s account and said the former adviser is only trying to “juice book sales.”

A copy of a letter from the National Security Council at The White House that was sent to former national security adviser John Bolton’s attorney objecting to “significant amounts of classified information” in the manuscript, including at the Top Secret level, is photographed Wednesday, Jan. 29, 2020 in Washington. (AP Photo/Wayne Partlow)

In response to the letter, Bolton’s attorney issued a response of his own on Wednesday. In the statement, the attorney wrote that none of the information provided “could reasonably be considered classified.”

“If he is called to testify, it seems certain that he will be asked questions that will elicit much of the information contained in the chapter of his manuscript dealing with his involvement in matters relating to Ukraine,” wrote Chuck Cooper. “We do not believe any of that information could reasonably be considered classified, but given that Ambassador Bolton could be called to testify as early as next week, it is imperative that we have the results of your review of that chapter as soon as possible.”

RELATED: Senate Republicans Lack Votes To Block Witnesses From Testifying In Impeachment Trial

Original Article

President Trump calls Bolton allegations about witholding Ukraine aid ‘false’

House Intelligence Committee Chairman Adam Schiff, D-Calif., joined by from left, Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif., Rep. Sylvia Garcia, D-Texas,, Rep. Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., and Rep. Val Demings, D-Fla., speaks to reporters at the Capitol in Washington, Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, during the impeachment trial of President Donald Trump. (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

OAN Newsroom
UPDATED 1:53 PM PT — Monday, January 27, 2020

Congressman Adam Schiff appears to be drumming up hype over John Bolton’s latest claims, which could potentially support the Democrat case for impeachment. While talking to reporters Monday, the California lawmaker said Bolton must testify in the impeachment trial, following the leak of a manuscript of his book.

Bolton allegedly claimed President Trump told him he would withhold aid from Ukraine unless it agrees to investigate the Bidens. Rep. Schiff is now hoping Bolton could provide evidence of that.

“He should be placed under oath and this is why we think the testimony should be public,”he stated. “It should be live; let the American people, along with the senators, evaluate John Bolton’s credibility when he testifies and make their own judgement. ”

President Trump denied the claims and said said he never told Bolton he would pressure Ukraine. He believes his former national security adviser is trying to “sell his book” by suggesting the president tied Ukrainian security aide to Democrat investigations.

Bolton has said he is willing to testify in the impeachment trial if subpoenaed, however, it is unclear if the Senate will choose to call him as a witness.

President Donald Trump speaks during a meeting in the Oval Office of the White House, Monday, Jan. 27, 2020, in Washington, with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

Meanwhile, moderate Republicans on the fence about calling witnesses are reportedly under more pressure after the Bolton book leak. According to The Hill, Republicans could see Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine) and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) defect and vote in favor of new evidence and witnesses. This follows their comments last week in support of issuing new subpoenas.

Before the Bolton report was released, Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska), a known swing vote, did not mention whether she backed more witnesses. She said she needs to review her notes to make an informed decision.

Sen. Mike Braun (R-Ind.) suggested Bolton’s credibility could be called into question because he left the White House on bad terms.

It’s unknown at this point whether the Senate has 51 votes to call new witnesses to speak under oath to lawmakers. President Trump has threatened to invoke executive privilege to block Bolton’s testimony and tangle the subpoena for his statement in the courts.

RELATED: President Trump’s approval rating soars amid impeachment trial

Original Article

John Bolton criticizes Trump’s approach to North Korea amid heightened tension

closeUS monitoring North Korea for possible 'Christmas present' missileVideo

US monitoring North Korea for possible 'Christmas present' missile

Officials are on the alert as North Korea's ultimatum for the US to ease sanctions or face consequences nears the December 31 deadline.

John Bolton, President Trump’s former national security adviser, criticized his old boss over the administration's misguided "rhetorical policy" toward North Korea along with its failure to exert "maximum pressure" during the high-stakes nuclear talks.

Bolton’s comments, which were published late Sunday on Axios, come at a precarious time between Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un. What once showed glimpses of an unlikely and historic foreign policy victory for Trump, now appears to be teetering on the brink of collapse.

Bolton said he doesn't believe the administration "really means it" when they talk about stopping North Korea's nuclear ambition. He said if they did they would "pursue a different course."

JAMES CARAFANO: NORTH KOREA-US HAVE CHANCE TO BREAK LOG JAM

U.S. officials on Sunday were on high alert due to a possible North Korean missile launch that has been menacingly referred to by Pyongyang as a "Christmas gift." Bolton said in the interview that if Kim makes good on the threat and launches a missile the White House should do something "that would be very unusual" and admit that they were wrong.

Bolton said– in the event of a missile launch– he hopes the White House can admit to the failure and then works with allies to "demonstrate we will not accept it." Bolton is seen as a hardliner towards North Korea and has said in the past that as it stands Kim "will never give up the nuclear weapons voluntarily."

Trump fired Bolton in September amid policy disagreements over North Korea and other issues. Trump said at the time that Bolton's view set the United States back "very badly" in talks with the North and added that "maybe a new method would be very good."

The relationship between Trump and Kim has been rocky at best and despite high-profile meetings and positive descriptions from Trump about their relationship, experts have raised concerns about Pyongyang becoming more of a threat.

Anthony Wier, a former State Department official who tracks nuclear disarmament for the Friends Committee on National Legislation, said Pyongyang has “been building new capabilities.”

"As long as that continues, they gain new capabilities to try new missiles to threaten us and our allies in new ways," he said.

Defense Secretary Mark Esper told reporters earlier this week that the U.S. has heard all the talk of a possible upcoming test around Christmas.

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"I've been watching the Korean Peninsula for a quarter-century now. I'm familiar with their tactics, with their bluster," he said. "We need to get serious and sit down and have discussions about a political agreement that denuclearizes the peninsula. That is the best way forward and arguably the only way forward if we're going to do something constructive."

Fox News' Bradford Betz contributed to this report

Original Article

John Bolton, Mick Mulvaney included in Senate Dems’ wish list for impeachment trial

closeEric Shawn: President Trump's impeachment edgeVideo

Eric Shawn: President Trump's impeachment edge

Judy Miller on the unexpected political impact of the proceedings.

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., on Sunday sent Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., a letter outlining the parameters for a weekslong Senate impeachment trial, including the proposal that former National Security Adviser John Bolton and acting Chief of Staff Mick Mulvaney be subpoenaed to testify.

Bolton and Mulvaney were among four new witnesses whose testimonies Democrats were seeking for the impeachment trial over President Trump's actions toward Ukraine.

In the letter, Schumer proposed the structure for a "fair and honest'' trial, in an attempt to launch negotiations ahead of House voting this week.

Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer of N.Y., laid out his requests for an impeachment trial in a letter Sunday.

Senate Minority Leader Sen. Chuck Schumer of N.Y., laid out his requests for an impeachment trial in a letter Sunday. (AP, File)

Trump is accused of abusing his presidential power by asking Ukraine to investigate his political rival, former Vice President Joe Biden, while holding American military aid as leverage, and obstructing Congress by blocking the House's efforts to investigate his actions. Trump and the White House repeatedly have denied he did anything wrong.

An impeachment vote is widely expected in the Democrat-controlled House, but likely will be quashed in the Senate, where Republicans have held the majority. McConnell has signaled his preference for a speedy trial.

Schumer wrote in his letter that the trial must "be one that not only hears all of the evidence and adjudicates the case fairly; it must also pass the fairness test with the American people."

Schumer also proposed a detailed structure and timeline for a trial to begin Jan. 7, with the swearing-in of Chief Justice John Roberts to oversee the proceedings and stretching for several weeks as Democrats subpoena witnesses and testimony.

John Bolton returns to Twitter, asks whether White House is afraid of what he may have to sayVideo

A recent book claimed that Bolton labeled the alternative foreign policy being run by Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani and others as a "drug deal," and he wanted no part of it. He left his post in September.

TRUMP TAKES NASTY DIG AT PELOSI IN LATEST SLAM OF HOUSE DEMS

In addition to Bolton and Mulvaney, Schumer said Democrats also wanted testimony from two other White House officials: Robert Blair, a top Mulvaney aide, and Michael Duffey, a budget official who was tasked with handling the Ukraine issue.

Should Mick Mulvaney remain Trump's chief of staff amid impeachment probe?Video

Schumer additionally set out a specific schedule that would allow for 24 hours of opening arguments by the House Democrats' impeachment managers and then 24 hours for the White House lawyers to present their arguments, followed by days of witness testimony.

A spokesman for McConnell told Fox News that the Senate majority leader “has made it clear he plans to meet with Leader Schumer to discuss the contours of a trial soon. That timeline has not changed.”

McConnell has made clear in recent days his preference for a speedy trial without calling witnesses, as other Republicans said they feared it could become a spectacle.

Appearing on CBS News' “Face the Nation'' Sunday, top ally Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., said he also preferred a swift trial.

"I'd tell the president, if somebody is ready to acquit you, I'd sort of get out of the way," Graham said. He warned that calling witnesses could mean that Trump administration officials such as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, whom the White House previously blocked from appearing before investigators, could be forced to testify.

"I understand the president's frustration, but I think what's best for the country is to get this thing over with," Graham said. "I clearly made up my mind. I'm not trying to hide the fact that I have disdain for the accusations in the process, so I don't need any witnesses."

Trump has lashed out repeatedly against impeachment and has told confidants that even if he's acquitted in the Senate as expected, it will mark a stain on his legacy.

"The Impeachment Hoax is just a continuation of the Witch Hunt which has been going on for 3 years. We will win!" Trump tweeted Sunday.

Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, said Sunday on ABC News' “This Week” that Trump should be able to call witnesses, including Biden's son Hunter and the whistleblower who reported Trump's July telephone conversation with Ukraine's president.

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Hunter Biden was on the board of a Ukrainian energy company while his father was vice president, and Trump has alleged that Joe Biden got a Ukrainian prosecutor fired because the prosecutor was looking into the energy company. The U.S. and many other Western governments had pushed for the prosecutor's ouster, saying he was soft on crime.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

Original Article