Rand Paul comes out against John Bolton as potential secretary of state: 'The man is a menace'

Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul issued a warning shot to President-elect Donald Trump on Tuesday, urging him not to select John Bolton as his secretary of state.

Trump is rumoured to be considering the former George W. Bush official for the position, and is also reportedly considering former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani. Bolton is a prominent proponent of the Iraq War.

Paul slammed Bolton in an op-ed published by Rare, calling him a “menace” who “never learned and never will.”

“Bolton is a longtime member of the failed Washington elite that Trump vowed to oppose, hell-bent on repeating virtually every foreign policy mistake the US has made in the last 15 years — particularly those Trump promised to avoid as president,” Paul wrote.

He continued:

“All nuance is lost on the man. The fact that Russia has had a base in Syria for 50 years doesn’t deter Bolton from calling for all out, no holds barred war in Syria. Bolton criticised the current administration for offering only a tepid war. For Bolton, only a hot-blooded war to create democracy across the globe is demanded.”

Paul noted that Bolton was a vocal proponent of the Iraq War, and as recently as last year publicly maintained his support for the US invasion.

“I still think the decision to overthrow Saddam was correct,” Bolton told the Washington Examiner in May 2015.

In his op-ed, Paul praised Trump for opposing the Iraq War “early” — though there is no evidence of him doing so before the war started — and argued that Bolton’s appointment to the position would ensure Trump’s campaign promises to change “our disastrous foreign policy” would be broken.

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