Six months into John Bolton's tenure as national security adviser, President Trump was already missing his predecessor.
NBC News reports that as Trump started to sour on Bolton, whose resignation was announced Tuesday, he began reaching out to his predecessor, H.R. McMaster, for advice. McMaster was ousted as national security adviser in March 2018, but by the fall, Trump was reportedly calling him to say "that he missed him," getting his take on various issues including Iran, one area where he and Bolton had disagreements.
But Trump has evidently been planning for Bolton's exit for a while now, as earlier this year, he placed his name "on a list of officials he'd like to get rid of before the end of the year," NBC reports. He was losing his "patience" with Bolton, the report also says, in part because of "what he viewed as Bolton's positioning himself in the news media as the decision-maker on key issues like Iran and Venezuela."
The calls to McMaster reportedly continued up until at least "a few months ago." The report notes that this isn't the first time Trump has reached out to an official he got rid of, reportedly calling former Chief of Staff Reince Priebus while being unhappy with then-Chief of Staff John Kelly. So although Bolton and Trump are currently engaged in a public spat over the circumstances that led to his departure, he can probably expect some friendly phone calls once Trump gets stuck with a replacement he hates even more.