President Donald Trump’s Senate impeachment trial is very near to its conclusion, with a final vote to acquit likely to take place on Wednesday.
However, according to an article published in Vanity Fair on Monday, the president is not prepared to let bygones be bygones when it comes to those who attempted to achieve his ouster. At the top of his list for payback? Former National Security Advisor John Bolton, one source told the magazine.
Source: It’s “payback time”
The liberal magazine quotes an anonymous source as saying that the president “has an enemies list that is growing by the day.”
What’s more, a “prominent Republican” is said to have told the publication that “it’s payback time” in the eyes of the commander in chief.
“Trump’s playbook is simple,” the unnamed person explained. “Go after people who crossed him during impeachment.”
As for who might be specifically targeted in these supposed retaliation plans, the names of Rep. Adam Schiff (D-CA), Rep. Jerry Nadler (D-NY), and Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) were mentioned by the magazine’s source, perhaps unsurprisingly.
Bolton atop the list?
But according to “several sources,” former National Security Advisor John Bolton’s name tops the list. “Trump has been calling people and telling them to go after Bolton,” one person reportedly said, going on to suggest that the president would like a criminal investigation opened into Bolton for leaking material to the media.
As of yet, there is no way to independently verify the truth of these claims, but the Washington Examiner has reported that the White House sent a letter to Bolton’s attorney stating that their client’s forthcoming book could not be published in its current state. The administration contends that Bolton’s memoir presently contains “significant amounts of classified information.”
“It also appears that some of this classified information is at the TOP SECRET level,” the letter continues. “Under federal law and the nondisclosure agreements your client signed, as a condition for gaining access to classified information, the manuscript may not be published or otherwise disclosed without the deletion of this classified information.”
Bolton’s tenure in the Trump administration was fraught with conflict, and he departed his position last September under contentious circumstances.
“I informed John Bolton last night that his services are no longer needed at the White House,” Trump tweeted at the time. “I disagreed strongly with many of his suggestions, as did others in the Administration, and therefore I asked John for his resignation, which was given to me this morning,” he added.
In response, Bolton disputed the president’s account in a text to Fox News personality Brian Kilmeade. “Let’s be clear,” Bolton insisted, “I resigned.”