Former National Security Advisor John Bolton on Sunday described as “baseless” the claims from President Donald Trump and other Republicans that the presidential election was stolen.
Speaking with ABC News host Martha Raddatz regarding the thousands of Trump supporters who marched in Washington, D.C., on Saturday, Bolton said, “Well, I think it’s very important for leaders of the Republican Party to explain to our voters, who are not as stupid as the Democrats think, that in fact Trump has lost the election and that his claims of election fraud are baseless.”
“The fact is that we’ve seen litigation in all the key battleground states, and it has failed consistently,” Bolton continued. “Right now, the Trump campaign is doing the legal equivalent of pitching pennies. Where are their silver dollars? Where is the evidence?”
“I think as every day goes by, it’s clearer and clearer there isn’t any evidence. But if the Republican voters are only hearing Donald Trump’s misrepresentations, it’s not surprising that they believe it,” Bolton added. “It’s critical for other Republican leaders to stand up and explain what actually happened. Donald Trump lost what, by any evidence we have so far, was a free and fair election.”
NEW: Former National Security Adviser John Bolton urges GOP leadership to "explain to our voters… that in fact Trump has lost the election and that these claims of election fraud are baseless." https://t.co/z6SZ06zbP3 pic.twitter.com/GyXya7xYAv
— ABC News (@ABC) November 15, 2020
Asked whether he thinks Republicans will accept a Trump loss, Bolton said, “Well, I think they’re getting ready to do it. I’ve said I think this is a character test for the Republican Party.”
I don’t buy the argument that Donald Trump has hypnotized Republican voters or that they’re not capable of accepting the truth. This is a myth that’s being perpetrated that’s simply not true. But it requires people to explain what happened.
The Trump campaign simply has no evidence. Their basic argument is this was a conspiracy so vast and so successful that there’s no evidence of it. Now if that’s true, I really want to know who the people are who pulled this off. We need to hire them at the CIA.
The fact is this is all blue smoke and mirrors. I think people will accept that if they see leaders they respect explain it to them.
Bolton further opined that Trump would not leave office without a fight, saying, “I do not expect him to go graciously. I do expect him to go. But I think pretty soon we’ll get the stab in the back theories. We’ll get the dark conspiracy theories continued. And he will make life as difficult as he can for the incoming Biden administration.”
Pressed on how few in the Republican party are coming forward and recognizing Joe Biden as president-elect, John Bolton tells @MarthaRaddatz he thinks "they're getting ready to do it."
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) November 15, 2020
Trump later tweeted that Bolton “was one of the dumbest people in government that I’ve had the ‘pleasure’ to work with. A sullen, dull and quiet guy, he added nothing to National Security except, ‘Gee, let’s go to war.’ Also, illegally released much Classified Information. A real dope!”
John Bolton was one of the dumbest people in government that I’ve had the “pleasure” to work with. A sullen, dull and quiet guy, he added nothing to National Security except, “Gee, let’s go to war.” Also, illegally released much Classified Information. A real dope!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 15, 2020
The Trump campaign has filed multiple lawsuits claiming widespread election irregularities. Thus far, none of the alleged irregularities have been shown to be significant enough to alter the outcome of the election, while some of the claims have even been dismissed by various courts.
This article has been expanded after publication to include additional information.
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