(businessinsider.com) – President Donald Trump asked Chinese President Xi Jinping to buy agricultural products from the US to help Trump win states with large farming industries in the 2020 election.
That’s according to an upcoming book by former national security adviser John Bolton, “In The Room Where It Happened: A White House Memoir.”
Bolton writes that Trump was “pleading with Xi to ensure he’d win.”
“He stressed the importance of farmers, and increased Chinese purchases of soybeans and wheat in the electoral outcome,” the book says.
“Trump’s conversations with Xi reflected not only the incoherence in his trade policy but also the confluence in Trump’s mind of his own political interests and U.S. national interests,” Bolton writes, according to an excerpt of the book published in The Wall Street Journal.
“Trump commingled the personal and the national not just on trade questions but across the whole field of national security,” the former national security adviser added. “I am hard-pressed to identify any significant Trump decision during my White House tenure that wasn’t driven by reelection calculations.”
The book offers multiple inside looks at events that took place during Bolton’s rocky tenure as Trump’s third national security adviser. In particular, it reveals new details about what happened in the White House during Trump’s efforts to strongarm Ukraine into delivering political dirt against former Vice President Joe Biden, Trump’s 2020 rival.
Bolton accuses the House of Representatives of committing “impeachment malpractice” in the book because he alleges that the president had engaged in significantly more impeachable conduct than just what he was ultimately accused of.
Referencing Trump’s China policy, Bolton said that the president’s actions “formed a pattern of fundamentally unacceptable behavior that eroded the very legitimacy of the presidency.”
“Had Democratic impeachment advocates not been so obsessed with their Ukraine blitzkrieg in 2019, had they taken the time to inquire more systematically about Trump’s behavior across his entire foreign policy, the impeachment outcome might well have been different,” he wrote.
The former national security adviser has attracted significant criticism from Democrats for including these details in his book after refusing to testify in the House’s impeachment hearings against Trump last year.
He later agreed to testify before the Republican-controlled Senate if subpoenaed, but the upper chamber voted against calling new witnesses in the president’s trial.
Bolton’s book is set to be released on June 23, and he has already taped an interview with ABC News to promote it. On Tuesday, the Trump administration sued the former national security adviser to prevent him from releasing the book.
The lawsuit against Bolton accuses him of breaking his contract by backing out of the National Security Council’s ongoing vetting process to determine whether Bolton’s book contains classified information that needs to be redacted or edited down.
The NSC “quickly identified significant quantities of classified information that it asked Defendant to remove,” the complaint said. “An iterative process between NSC Staff and Defendant then began, as required by the binding agreements he signed, with changes to the book and other information being securely passed between Defendant and NSC staff. Soon, though, Defendant apparently became dissatisfied at the pace of NSC’s review.”
It alleges that instead of waiting for the process to conclude, Bolton “decided to take matters into his own hands.”
On June 7, “without Defendant giving any prior notice to the NSC, press reports revealed that Defendant and his publisher had resolved to release the book on June 23, without completing the pre-publication review process,” the lawsuit said.