Former U.S. national security adviser John Bolton says President Donald Trump is unfit for office.
In portions of an interview with ABC News released Thursday, Bolton says of Trump, "I don't think he has the competence to carry out the job."
Bolton's condemnation comes as the Trump administration is desperately trying to stop the former official from releasing a bombshell book about his tenure in the White House.
On Wednesday night, the Department of Justice sought an emergency order to halt the book’s publication.
In "The Room Where it Happened," Bolton accuses the president of sweeping misdeeds in order to seek re-election, including explicitly seeking Chinese President Xi Jinping's help.
China's foreign ministry on Thursday said it had no intention of meddling in foreign elections.
Bolton left the White House last September. Trump later claimed Bolton was fired.
A White House spokesperson on Thursday accused Bolton of dodging the normal review process for officials who write about administration affairs.
"John Bolton should, in fact, understand that. He is a misguided hawk on foreign policy and a weak dove of an author. And this is despicable that he chose to publish this book without fully going through the review process."
The White House alleges Bolton's book discloses classified information, and the U.S. Justice Department filed a civil lawsuit this week to stop Bolton from releasing it.
Bolton's publisher, Simon & Schuster, dismissed the accusation and said thousands of copies have already been distributed.
Trump tweeted his fury, calling the book "a compilation of lies and made up stories, all intended to make me look bad."
Trump isn't the only one mad at Bolton: Democratic Representative Adam Schiff blasted Bolton for refusing to testify at their impeachment hearings last year, which focused on allegations Trump tried to solicit foreign interference to win the 2020 election - a claim Bolton seems to emphatically endorse.
"I think that John Bolton has to, somehow, rationalize selling out by keeping this secret for his book, and that's the way he's attempting to do it."
In the memoir, Bolton cited multiple conversations in which Trump demonstrated "fundamentally unacceptable behavior that eroded the very legitimacy of the presidency."
Bolton told ABC News, "there really isn't any guiding principle that I was able to discern other than what's good for Donald Trump's re-election."