John Bolton 2012: Now, More Than Ever

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Aug. 30 2010 9:28 AM

John Bolton 2012: Now, More Than Ever

Jamie Weinstein asks John Bolton if he might run for president in 2012. He doesn't say no!

"[I]t is a very great honor that anybody would even think of asking. I’m obviously not a politician I’ve never run for any federal elective office at all and, you know, itis something that would obviously require a great deal of effort," hesaid. "What I do think, though, and what concerns me, is the lack offocus generally in the national debate about national security issues.Now, I understand the economy is in a ditch and people are concernedabout it, but our adversaries overseas are not going to wait for us toget our economic house in order."

When pressed as to whether that means he would consider a run,Bolton seemed to suggest that he might do it, at the very least to helpput national security issues at the top of the debate agenda.

"In the sense that I want to make sure that not only in theRepublican Party, but in the body politic as a whole, people are awareof threats that remain to the United States. You know, as somebody whowrites op-eds and appears on the television, I appreciate as well asanybody that… there is a limit to what that accomplishes," he said."Whereas, some governor from some state in the middle of the countryannounces for president they get enormous coverage even if their viewsare utterly uninformed on major issues."

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A Tancredo-style Bolton stunt campaign! Why not? Bolton's had more fun navigating CPAC stages and Fox News greenrooms than he had trying to get a vote from Lincoln Chafee. He'll give reporters napalm-strength quotes, so he knows we'll cover him. Also, who is "some governor" from "the middle of the country"? Does he happen to own a red shirt ?

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. You can reach him at daveweigel@gmail.com, or tweet at him @daveweigel.