Curiously, the rest of the article doesn’t quite seem to support its sensational headline.
Former National Security Advisor John Bolton admitted Wednesday that his testimony in President Donald Trump’s recent impeachment proceedings involving Ukraine would have had no impact on the trial’s outcome even after sections of his upcoming book leaked attempting to convict the president in its final days.
“People can argue about what I should have said and what I should have done,” Bolton said at Vanderbilt University Wednesday night during a forum with his predecessor Susan Rice, according to ABC News. “I will bet you a dollar right here and now my testimony would have made no difference to the ultimate outcome.”
“I sleep at night because I have followed my conscience,” Bolton added.
In the final days of the trial however, sections of Bolton’s upcoming book were leaked to the New York Times, featuring Bolton accusing Trump of tying the nearly $400 million in military aid to Ukraine with politically motivated investigations as Democrats alleged. The leak happened to come on the same day the book became available for online pre-order revealing the move as nothing more than a publicity stunt.
Bold mine. Now I don’t doubt for a moment that the move WAS a publicity stunt, mind. But the above hardly amounts to Bolton himself “admitting” to any such, openly and in plain language; his “confession” in the first ‘graph is pretty specific, and obviously refers to something else altogether, albeit related.
Bolton’s acknowledgment that his testimony wouldn’t have altered the outcome of Shampeachment could be construed as kind of a left-handed, backdoor way of admitting to the leak’s publicity-stunt nature, I suppose, however great a stretch that might be. And lord knows I am not in the least bothered by our side using hyperbole and misdirection as a means of attacking our enemies, just as they’ve always done to us. But such weapons must be wielded competently, craftily, to be most effective. And they ought not be wasted on an irrelevancy, a disgruntled, treacherous non-entity whose 15 minutes of (minor) fame already ticked away.
Could be there’s a case to be made for Bolton having actually confessed to perpetrating a “publicity stunt,” somewhere, somewhen. But if there is, I can’t find it in this brief article.