Did Trump plan a coup to stay in power? Former NSA John Bolton explains
- Former National Security Advisor John Bolton served during Donald Trump's presidency
- He said Trump's attempts to retain power weren't like a "carefully planned coup d’état"
- Bolton casually mentioned his experience in planning coups abroad, during the interview
Former National Security Advisor John Bolton commented on the Jan 6 hearing testimony, while speaking to CNN and detailed his own expertise in plotting coups. The lifelong foreign policy veteran did so to explain why Donald Trump's attempts to retain office wasn't a "carefully planned coup d’état".
"As someone who has helped plan coup d’état — not here but, you know, other places — it takes a lot of work", he said, countering the interviewer's assertion that "one doesn’t have to be brilliant to attempt a coup."
Bolton, however, was quick to criticize the former president and his old boss.
The 73-year-old said, "It was just stumbling around from one idea to another", adding, "It’s rambling from one half-assed idea to another. One plan that falls through and another comes up. That’s what he was doing. As I say, none of it is defensible. But you have to understand the nature of what the problem of Donald Trump is".
"Ultimately, he did unleash the rioters at the capitol. As to that, there’s no doubt. But not overthrow the Constitution, to buy more time to throw the matter back to the states to try to redo the issue. And if you don’t believe that, you’re going to overreact", Bolton continued.
The hearing, Tuesday, revealed that Trump put out a galvanizing tweet on December 19, 2020, where he said "A great report by Peter. Statistically impossible to have lost the 2020 Election. Big protest in D.C. on January 6th. Be there, will be wild!"
Just before this, there was an explosive meeting in the Oval Office on December 18, where plans to steal the vote machines were also floated.
An ex-Twitter employee also testified anonymously that Trump's seemingly direct communication with those responsible for the violence at the Capitol was worrisome, and alleged that the former president received special treatment due to his status and if it were an ordinary person, their account would have been blocked long before January 8, 2021, which is when the Republican's account was finally suspended.
Bolton, while speaking about the coups in other countries, made a reference to what he wrote in a book about US activities in Venezuela when he was the NSA in 2018 and 2019, and the nation was formally recognizing Juan Guaidó as the president of the South American country.