US Drops Lawsuit Over Former Trump Adviser Bolton’s Book

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber is a senior reporter for The Epoch Times based in Maryland. He covers U.S. and world news.
June 17, 2021Updated: June 17, 2021

U.S. prosecutors agreed on June 16 to drop a civil lawsuit against John Bolton, who worked in the Trump administration, over the publication of his 2020 memoir “The Room Where It Happened.”

A court filing in USA v. Bolton said that prosecutors agreed to the dismissal, as did lawyers for Bolton, former President Donald Trump’s onetime national security adviser.

The Trump administration in June 2020 sued Bolton, as officials asserted the book contained classified information that would compromise national security if allowed to be published without a government review.

Prosecutors have also dropped a grand jury investigation that was related to the book, a lawyer representing Bolton said.

“These actions represent a complete vindication for Ambassador Bolton, and a repudiation of former President Trump’s attempt, under the pretext of protecting classified information, first to suppress the book’s publication, and when that failed in court, to penalize the ambassador,” Sarah Tinsley, a spokeswoman for Bolton, told news outlets.

Charles Cooper, a lawyer for Bolton, added, “By ending these proceedings without in any way penalizing Ambassador Bolton or limiting his proceeds from the book, the Department of Justice has tacitly acknowledged that President Trump and his White House officials acted illegitimately.”

The Department of Justice didn’t immediately respond to a request by The Epoch Times for comment.

While a federal judge last year denied the department’s attempt to block publication of the book, he said that Bolton “gambled with the national security of the United States” by not waiting until the government review of his tome was completed.

“He has exposed his country to harm and himself to civil (and potentially criminal) liability,” U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth said in his ruling.

Hundreds of thousands of copies of Bolton’s book had already been shipped, undercutting the argument for an injunction.

Trump suggested at the time that Bolton should be jailed over the book, accusing him of “disseminating, for profit, highly classified information.”

Bolton, who also worked in the Reagan and George W. Bush administrations, left the administration in the fall of 2019. Trump said he asked Bolton for his resignation because both he and others in the administration disagreed strongly with many of Bolton’s ideas. In his resignation note, Bolton thanked Trump for “having afforded me this opportunity to serve our country.”

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