Former intelligence agency director Robert Cardillo speaks out against 'erratic' Trump

Robert Cardillo, former deputy director of the Defense Intelligence Agency and ex-director of National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, spoke out against President TrumpDonald John TrumpJudge rules to not release Russia probe documents over Trump tweets Trump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida MORE on Friday in an op-ed published in The Denver Post.

“Since I have been eligible to vote, I have never registered with a political party. I remain an independent with a history of voting for candidates I believe in — I focused on their policy and not their party,” wrote Cardillo, who served as an intelligence official for six different presidents. 

“Before this election, I have never spoken out for or against a candidate for any office.


"But I can be silent no longer,” he wrote.

Cardillo said that broadly speaking he can “attest that Americans were very well served by those they elected to fill critical national security positions” with the exception of Trump.

“I have briefed him up close — and I have seen and felt the effect of his faults on our nation’s security,” Cardillo wrote. ”Out of respect for the confidential nature of Oval Office conversations, I will not provide details.

“Suffice to say that the person you see presiding over COVID-19 press conferences is the same one in the privacy of his office. He has little patience for facts or data that do not comport with his personal world view. Thus, the conversations are erratic and less than fully thoughtful.”

Cardillo said that unlike other presidents he has served under, Trump puts more weight on “the word of dictators like [Russian President] Vladimir PutinVladimir Vladimirovich PutinThe foreign policy canyon between Americans over China Russia ready to freeze nuclear warheads in exchange for New START extension Safeguarding US elections by sanctioning Russian sovereign debt MORE” than the U.S. intelligence community.

“Our current president bases his decisions on his instincts, and his instincts are based upon a personal value proposition — what’s in it for me?” Cardillo wrote.


The former intelligence official said that the president’s response to the coronavirus pandemic is what made him break his streak of nonpartisanship.

“We must elect a thoughtful, moral, responsible, respectful leader on Nov. 3. Our current president is not that leader,” he wrote.

Though Cardillo’s op-ed fell short of a direct endorsement of Democratic presidential nominee Joe BidenJoe BidenTrump and advisers considering firing FBI director after election: WaPo Obama to campaign for Biden in Florida Supreme Court reinstates ban on curbside voting in Alabama MORE, he is one of several former administration officials to speak out against the president.

One of them, former Department of Homeland Security chief of staff Miles Taylor, has made similar statements about briefing Trump, at one point saying advisors worried about his “mental acuity.”

Taylor and other Trump administration officials have formally endorsed Biden through the group Republican Voters Against Trump.