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Steve Bannon is a former executive chair of the far-right website Brietbart and the former White House Chief Strategist to the Trump administration.
Stephen Bannon is the former executive chairman of Breitbart. He served in this position from March 2012 to August 2016. There, he is credited as forming the ideology for what would become the alt-right. On August 17th, 2016, he was appointed to the position of Chief Executive in Donald Trump's 2016 United States Presidential Election campaign. On November 13th, 2016, President-elect Donald Trump announced Breitbart executive chairman Steve Bannon would be serving as his Chief Strategist and senior adviser, an appointment which drew sharp criticism from the anti-defamation league for Bannon's ties to anti-semitism and white nationalism.
Allegations of White Supremacy
In a July 2016 interview, declared that Breitbart was "a platform for the alt-right." He continued:
"Look, are there some people that are white nationalists that are attracted to some of the philosophies of the alt-right?" he said. "Maybe. Are there some people that are anti-Semitic that are attracted? Maybe. Right? Maybe some people are attracted to the alt-right that are homophobes, right? But that's just like, there are certain elements of the progressive left and the hard left that attract certain elements."
Bannon's ex-wife also claimed that Bannon made anti-semitic remarks in a 2007 court filing. However, Bannon denied making the comments.
Steve Bannon has been accused of courting white supremacists within the alt-right by former Breitbart editor Ben Shapiro. Prominent Democratic politicians, such as House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senator Elizabeth Warren, have accused Bannon of being a white supremacist as well.
Steve Bannon and Jared Kushner Feud
On April 6th, 2017, The Daily Beast reported that anonymous sources in the Trump administration claimed Trump’s chief strategist Steve Bannon called Trump’s senior advisor and son-in-law Jared Kushner a "cuck" and “globalist" during a White House feud. That day, Twitter posted a Moments page titled “Infighting between Kushner and Bannon has devolved into ‘alt-right’ name-calling.” Meanwhile, Redditor themessias1001 submitted The Daily Beast article to /r/politics, where it received more than 5,500 votes (95% upvoted) and 1,200 comments within four hours.
Firing From the White House
On August 18th, 2017, Drudge Report reported that Bannon had been fired from his White House position as Chief Strategist.
Meanwhile, the New York Times reported that while Bannon had not officially been fired, Trump had decided to remove him from the administration, and was in the process of discussing how and when to do so. The report states that an aide to Bannon insisted that resigning was Bannon's idea, and that he had submitted his resignation on August 7th, but it was delayed due to the fallout of the 2017 Unite the Right Rally. Bannon was officially no longer with the White House later that afternoon.
The news comes two days after Bannon had given an unsolicited interview to The American Prospect in which he went rogue with the administration, talking about his enemies within as well as the administration's positions on China and North Korea.
On January 3rd, 2018, the Guardian published a preview of the book Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House by Michael Wolff. In the selection, Bannon is quoted discussing Donald Trump Jr. and Jared Kushner's meeting with several Russian agents at Trump Tower in 2016. He said:
"Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately."
That day, the comments were posted on the /r/RussiaLago and /r/politics subreddits, where threy garnered more than 1,100 points, respectively.
Later that day, President Trump released a statement on Bannon's comments. They said:
"Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party."
Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn’t as easy as I make it look. Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans. Steve doesn’t represent my base--he’s only in it for himself.
Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was. It is the only thing he does well. Steve was rarely in a one-on-one meeting with me and only pretends to have had influence to fool a few people with no access and no clue, whom he helped write phony books.
We have many great Republican members of Congress and candidates who are very supportive of the Make America Great Again agenda. Like me, they love the United States of America and are helping to finally take our country back and build it up, rather than simply seeking to burn it all down.
Online, people noted how Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell's various support systems reacted positively to the President's statements. The official Twitter account for Team Mitch tweeted a gif of McConnell smiling. Within three hours, the post (shown below, left) has received more than 1,400 retweets and 3,400 likes.
Twitter user @BrenScher tweeted a screenshot from the Senate Leadership Fund with the caption "Team McConnell so happy it is putting emojis in press releases." The post (shown below) received more than 200 retweets and 500 likes in four hours.
Later that day, Donald Trump Jr tweeted, "Andrew Breitbart would be ashamed of the division and lies Steve Bannon is spreading!" The post (shown below) received more than 3,200 retweets and 10,000 likes in less than five hours.
Cease and Desist
On the evening of January 3rd, 2018, one of President Trump's attorneys, Charles J. Harder, sent Bannon a cease-and-desist notice, forbidding the former adviser from making disparaging remarks against the president. In a statement by Harder, the firm states:
"This law firm represents President Donald J. Trump and Donald J. Trump for President, Inc. On behalf of our clients, legal notice was issued today to Stephen K. Bannon, that his actions of communicating with author Michael Wolff regarding an upcoming book give rise to numerous legal claims including defamation by libel and slander, and breach of his written confidentiality and non-disparagement agreement with our clients. Legal action is imminent."
The letter to Bannon warns him of legal ramifications for making negative comments about the president, stating that Bannon violated a non-disclosure agreement. It reads:
"You [Bannon] have breached the Agreement by, among other things, communicating with author Michael Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company, disclosing Confidential Information to Mr. Wolff, and making disparaging statements and in some cases outright defamatory statements to Mr. Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company, knowing that they would be included in Mr. Wolff’s book and publicity surrounding the marketing and sale of his book."
The following day, Bannon reiterated his support for President Trump on Breitbart News Tonight, the SiriusXM radio show he hosts. He said, "The President of the United States is a great man. You know, I support him day in and day out."
Exit from Breitbart
Following the publication of Bannon's comments about the president, many of his republican allies and backers claimed to no longer communicate with Bannon. Rebekah Mercer, described by the New York Times as "an estranged financial patron and Breitbart investor," said, "My family and I have not communicated with Steve Bannon in many months and have provided no financial support to his political agenda, nor do we support his recent actions and statements."
On January 9th, Bannon stepped down from his roles as executive chairman of Brietbart News.
Following Bannon's departure, some in the conservative media expressed happiness about his exit. In a series of tweets, Political commentator Ben Shapiro tweeted, "My only sadness is the stain Bannon placed on Andrew Breitbart’s name. Now Breitbart has an opportunity to return to the vision of its namesake, and turn away from being the personal political club for a sleazy, brutal con man." The first post (shown below, left) received more than 900 retweets and 5,700 likes in 24 hours.
On June 14th, 2018, The New York Times reported that Steve Bannon was looking into creating a "deplorables coin" cryptocurrency in references to Hillary Clinton's "basket of deplorables" gaffe. Additionally, the article reported that Bannon claimed to have a "good stake" in Bitcoin and describes crypto markets as "disruptive populism" that "takes control back from central authorities."
New Yorker Festival
On September 3rd, 2018, The New York Times published an article titled "Steve Bannon Headlines New Yorker Festival," reporting that Bannon would be a guest at an upcoming festival by The New Yorker magazine, where he would be interviewed by the magazine's editor David Remnick. That day, several prominent celebrities booked for the event tweeted that they would no longer attend if Bannon was present, including comedian John Mulaney, producer Judd Apatow, talk show host Jimmy Fallon, comedian Patton Oswalt and actor Jim Carrey (shown below).
That evening, Remnick disinvited Bannon from the festival. According to New Yorker staff writer Philip Gourevitch, Remnick sent staff a note that he would interview Bannon in a "more traditionally journalistic setting" but "not on stage" (shown below).
That same day, The New York Times published an article about the controversy, which included a statement from Bannon referring to Remnick as "gutless":
"The reason for my acceptance was simple: I would be facing one of the most fearless journalists of his generation. In what I would call a defining moment, David Remnick showed he was gutless when confronted by the howling online mob."
On September 4th, author Malcolm Gladwell posted a tweet remarking that "Joe McCarthy was done in when he was confronted by someone with intelligence and guts, before a live audience" (shown below, left). The same day, National Review writer David French tweeted about the controversy, arguing that "the heckler's veto is more dangerous than Bannon's presence on that stage" (shown below, right).
#StopPresidentBannon is a Twitter hashtag launched in protest Donald Trump’s appointment of Chief Strategist Steve Bannon to the National Security Council in January 2017.
On January 28th, 2016, United States President Donald Trump signed a memorandum to reorganize the National Security Council (NSC), adding his chief strategist Steve Bannon and Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, while removing the director of national intelligence and the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. That day, Interim Dean Will Mebane of St. Paul’s Episcospal Cathedral tweeted the hashtag #StopPresidentBannon, which gained over 180 likes and 150 retweets within 48 hours (shown below).
On April 6th, Seth Meyers produced "A Closer Look" segment on the "President Bannon meme. After premiering on _Late Night with Seth Meyers," Late Night uploaded the segment to YouTube, where it garnered more than 2.3 million views.
On April 12th, the Twitter account @RogueSNRadvisor tweeted (shown below) a poll, which said, "Tomorrow, let's roast a WH staffer all day. Who should we pick on? (Pres is too easy)."
The following day, @RogueSNRadvisor published two tweets (shown below), asking users to tweet jokes about Steve Bannon using the hashtag #RoastBannon.
Throughout the day, users tweeted roasts of Steve Bannon under the hashtag #RoastBannon.
Several news media outlets covered the meme, including Uproxx and The Wrap.
 Twitter – @deanwillmebane's Tweet
 Wikipedia – Steve Bannon
 Twitter – @RogueSNRadvisor's Tweet
 Uproxx – Twitter Is Throwing A Steve Bannon Roast Amid Rumors Of His Imminent Firing
 The Wrap – Happy #RoastBannon Day: The Funniest Jabs at Trump’s Chief Strategist
 The Atlantic – I Know Trump's New Campaign Chairman, Steve Bannon. Here's What You Need To Know.
 NBC News – Trump Campaign CEO Steve Bannon Accused of Anti-Semitic Remarks by Ex-Wife
 Fox News – Ex-wife accused Trump campaign CEO Bannon of anti-Semitic statements
 Mother Jones – How Donald Trump's New Campaign Chief Created an Online Haven for White Nationalists
 The Daily Beast – Steve Bannon Calls Jared Kushner a Cuck
 Twitter – Report – infighting between kushner and bannon has devolved into alt-right name calling
 Reddit – /r/politics
 The New York Times – Trump Tells Aides He Has Decided to Remove Stephen Bannon
 The American Prospect – Steve Bannon, Unrepentant
 The Guardian – Trump Tower meeting with Russians 'treasonous', Bannon says in explosive book
 The New York Times – Read Trump’s Reaction to Steve Bannon’s Comments
 Reddit – Steve Bannon just called the Trump Tower meeting treasonous and unpatriotic
 Reddit – Steve Bannon isn’t against treason, just poorly executed treason.
 Twitter – @Team_Mitch's Tweet
 Twitter – @BrentScher's Tweet
 Twitter – @DonaldJTrumpJr's Tweet
 ABC News – Trump attorney sends Bannon cease and desist letter over 'disparaging' comments
 CNN – Despite blast by Trump, Bannon reiterates support for President
 The New York Times – Steve Bannon Steps Down From Breitbart Post
 The Washington Post – Mercer issues rare public rebuke of former ally Bannon
 Twitter – @benshapiro's Tweet
 The New York Times – Stephen Bannon Buys Into Bitcoin
 The New York Times – Steve Bannon Headlines New Yorker Festival
 The New York Times – New Yorker Festival Pulls Steve Bannon as Headliner Following High-Profile Dropouts
Vavian "Strongbrush" Free
Jan 04, 2018 at 12:04PM EST
Apr 13, 2017 at 06:47PM EDT in reply to
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