GOP senator says Senate should get copy of Bolton manuscript
Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.) is calling for the White House to hand over a copy of former national security adviser John Bolton’s forthcoming memoir.
“I am encouraging the White House, anybody that I can talk to, to say: That manuscript is pertinent and we should get access to that manuscript to see what they’re actually saying,” Lankford said in a Facebook video posted on Monday night.
The New York Times reported on Sunday night that Bolton, in his forthcoming memoir, will claim that Trump tied aid for Ukraine to the country helping with investigations into Democrats, including former Vice President Joe Biden and his son Hunter Biden.
Bolton’s claim has upended what was expected to be a smooth path to Trump’s acquittal in his Senate impeachment trial, with GOP leadership predicting, before the Times report, that they would be able to block efforts to open the door to new witnesses. That vote is expected later this week.
Lankford did not indicate that he wants Bolton to testify, but noted that there are “plenty of microphones all over the country that he should step forward and start talking about it right now.”
Democrats would need four Republicans to vote with them to allow witnesses. If they overcome that initial hurdle, both sides are expected to make motions for specific individuals and the Senate would then vote on them.
Lankford’s call for the manuscript comes after Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) also publicly urged the White House to send over the manuscript, arguing that senators should be able to “evaluate” it.
“I think what we have to do here is evaluate the manuscript. … I want to know what’s in the manuscript,” Graham said.