Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade rallied to the defense of former National Security Adviser John Bolton on Thursday, saying he didn’t “like the idea” of people calling his former Fox News colleague a liar.
Following revelations that Bolton’s upcoming book claims that President Donald Trump told him about a Ukrainian quid pro quo, the president’s supporters—including many Fox personalities who worked with Bolton—have opened fire on the hawkish ex-White House aide.
During Thursday's broadcast of the president's favorite morning show, the Fox & Friends crew dutifully promoted Trump’s Wednesday night “Game Over” tweet in which he shared a video clip of Bolton referencing the infamous July 25 call with the Ukrainian president, claiming it contradicts Bolton’s book.
“It’s where John Bolton actually talks about the phone call,” co-host Steve Doocy said. “But it also talks—apparently he says there was no quid pro quo. And he talks about how the United States would like to get rid of corruption and things like that. Nonetheless, the president said ‘game over’ after he saw this video.”
After playing the video of the then-national security adviser’s August interview, which has Bolton describing Trump and the Ukrainian leader as having “warm and cordial calls,” co-host Ainsley Earhardt declared, “That’s interesting. Completely contradicts his forthcoming book!”
Kilmeade, however, stood up for the former longtime Fox News contributor while reminding his co-hosts that Bolton used to be a regular fixture on their show.
“So John Bolton had a different take there,” Kilmeade stated. “I don’t like the idea of people making John Bolton out to be a liar.”
“He has sat on this couch before. He’s not a liar. They have a differing of opinion. But, questioning his credibility, I don’t think,” he continued, prompting Earhardt to interject.
“You’re saying maybe The New York Times, maybe whoever reported that, read the book and got something out of it that John Bolton didn’t say,” she wondered.
“I would say that,” Kilmeade concluded. “He could answer a question but not answer a question completely and not be a liar.”
Kilmeade, meanwhile, was one of the first people Bolton contacted last September after Trump announced he’d fired the former Fox contributor as national security adviser. Bolton texted Kilmeade while he was on-air to claim, “Let’s be clear. I resigned.”
While Kilmeade seemingly feels a bit uncomfortable with smears against his ex-colleague, other pro-Trump Fox Newsers have no such qualms.
Fox Business Network host Lou Dobbs, who celebrated when Bolton was first hired by Trump, has trashed Bolton as a “tool for radical” Democrats while labeling him a “turncoat.” And Fox News contributor Dan Bongino’s flip-flop on Bolton was even more overt, as he went from praising Bolton’s loyalty to describing him as a “snake.”