Donald Trump’s former national security adviser said on Monday that he is prepared to testify in the Senate impeachment trial.
“Since my testimony is once again at issue, I have had to resolve the serious competing issues as best I could, based on careful consideration and study,” Bolton said in a statement posted to his website. “I have concluded that, if the Senate issues a subpoena for my testimony, I am prepared to testify.”
His revelation that he would honor a subpoena should he be called to testify is a major reversal from his previous stance, in which he refused to testify before House investigators until a judge ruled on whether his presence could be compelled.
It appears to be a dare to Republican senators — who currently have no plans to call any witnesses at an impeachment trial — to call him as a witness.
Bolton is a key figure in the Ukrainian scandal that led to Trump’s impeachment.
Fiona Hill, a former national security aide under Bolton, testified that Bolton thought the effort to withhold military aid to Ukraine in order to force the country’s leadership to investigate Joe Biden was wrong.
“I am not part of whatever drug deal Sondland and Mulvaney are cooking up,” Bolton said, according to Hill’s recollection.
Bolton also called Rudy Giuliani, Trump’s personal lawyer who also played a role in the military aid hold up, a “hand grenade who’s going to blow everybody up.”
It’s still unclear what a Senate impeachment trial against Trump is going to look like.
Trump-supporting Republicans, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), want to quickly acquit Trump. And calling Bolton as a witness could complicate that effort.
For now, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is still holding on to the two articles of impeachment against Trump — one for abuse of power and another for obstruction — as leverage to get the Senate to hold a fair trial.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.