WASHINGTON — Rudy Giuliani came out swinging Wednesday against former National Security Adviser John Bolton’s new tell all book.
During an appearance on Fox News, Giuliani, who serves as President Donald Trump’s personal attorney, called Bolton a “backstabber” and said he’s not quite sure “what happened” to him.
“I don’t care if he says what he saw or he doesn’t,” Giuliani said on Fox News’ “America’s Newsroom” of Bolton’s new book, “The Room Where It Happened.”
“If they want to publish what he says about me, I’m sure that’s not classified,” said Giuliani. “I’m happy to have him do it and I’m happy to respond to it because he’s a backstabber.”
Addressing Bolton’s claims that Giuliani and Trump “mishandled” foreign affairs, Giuliani said Bolton never came to him to address his concerns.
“He never came to me and gave me those concerns,” Giuliani said. “If he was concerned about that, if the man were a man rather than a backstabber, he would’ve talked to me…He’s selling out to sell a book. I don’t know what happened to him.”
The Trump administration has filed suit to block Bolton’s book, which is scheduled for release on June 23, on claims that it contains classified information.
In its filing, the Justice Department argues that Bolton “regularly came into possession of some of the most sensitive classified information that exists in the U.S. government,” as part of his day to day duties. Officials said Bolton’s manuscript, which contains over 500 pages, was “rife with classified information, which he proposed to release to the world” and contained “significant quantities of classified information that it asked Defendant to remove.”
“The United States is not seeking to censor any legitimate aspect of Defendant’s manuscript; it merely seeks an order requiring Defendant to complete the prepublication review process and to take all steps necessary to ensure that only a manuscript that has been officially authorized through that process — and is thus free of classified information — is disseminated publicly,” the suit argues.
In a statement Tuesday, the American Civil Liberties Union called the lawsuit “doomed to fail.”
Ben Wizner, director of the ACLU’s speech, technology and privacy project, said the Supreme Court rejected a half-century ago the Nixon administration’s efforts to block the release of the Pentagon Papers, and said it has been since established that prior restraints on publication are unconstitutional.
“As usual, the government’s threats have nothing to do with safeguarding national security, and everything to do with avoiding scandal and embarrassment,” Wizner said.
Calls for statement to John Bolton’s spokesperson was met with “no comment.”