WASHINGTON (AP) — President Donald Trump asked China’s Xi Jinping during a 2019 summit meeting to help his reelection prospects by purchasing more American farm products, according to a new book by former Trump national security adviser John Bolton that is highly critical of the president.
Bolton called Trump’s effort to shift the June 2019 conversation to the U.S. election a stunning move, and wrote that it was among innumerable conversations that “formed a pattern of fundamentally unacceptable behavior that eroded the very legitimacy of the presidency.”
Overall, Bolton wrote, because staff had served him so poorly, Trump “saw conspiracies behind rocks, and remained stunningly uninformed on how to run the White House, let alone the huge federal government.”
As for the meeting with the Chinese president in Osaka, Japan, Bolton wrote that Trump told Xi that Democrats were hostile to China.
“He then, stunningly, turned the conversation to the coming U.S. presidential election, alluding to China’s economic capability to affect the ongoing campaigns, pleading with Xi to ensure he’d win,” Bolton said. “He stressed the importance of farmers, and increased Chinese purchases of soybeans and wheat in the electoral outcome.”
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