John Bolton Won't Rule Out Presidential Ambitions

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Sunday, 09 Feb 2014 08:50 PM

By Greg Richter

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Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton insists he is focusing this year on helping elect people who think like him — but he won't rule out a 2016 presidential campaign, says a BuzzFeed report.

Bolton, a hawk on foreign policy, served at the United Nations under President George W. Bush. He has set up two political action committees to support candidates in this year's midterms who share his vision on national security, which he feels is being ignored in current political discourse.

The Wall Street Journal reported in late January that Bolton told a group of Republican donors he was "thinking about" running for president in 2016. But in an interview airing on WABC radio Sunday night, the Maryland resident told host Aaron Klein he is focused on November.

"I thought about running for the presidency myself in 2011 and 2012 for exactly the reason we’ve been talking about — national security is simply not where it should be on our overall political agenda," Bolton told WABC.

"I've really put 2016 aside because I think this upcoming election is so critical," he said. "But every day that goes by just increases my concern that our political leaders are not addressing mounting national securing challenges to the United States. And I think the people of this country deserve better than having these issues ignored."

BuzzFeed noted that Bolton's views contrast with the more libertarian leanings of Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky, a tea party favorite with expected presidential ambitions of his own. Paul's views have been gaining popularity in the Grand Old Party, but Bolton might seek a dark horse run to bring the debate back to his side.

Bolton has called NSA leaker Edward Snowden a traitor, while Paul has been more lenient, saying he deserves only a few years in prison.



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