Not since The Atlantic’s exposé on Mike Pence have we seen such a revealing article about one of the men closest to Trump and the presidency. Vanity Fair’s report on Trump’s former White House Chief Strategist, Steve Bannon delivers insight into the Breitbart News executive chairman. It reveals a man who clearly thinks Trump is done and who hopes to fill the power vacuum with a possible if improbable run for president in 2020.
Bannon says @RealDonaldTrump "has lost a step," is like "an 11-year old child" and probably won't finish his term. He's also weighing a run for President himself (perhaps Moore can return the favor and campaign for him) https://t.co/KpwaHUaoZP
— West Wing Reports (@WestWingReport) December 21, 2017
Maybe the most revealing paragraphs:
“‘In October, Bannon called an adviser and said he would consider running for president if Trump doesn’t run for re-election in 2020. Which Bannon has told people is a realistic possibility,’ wrote Gabriel Sherman for Vanity Fair.”
Trump and Bannon are still apparently in cahoots and working to stop the Russia investigation together. A Washington Times report said that Senator Adam Schiff believed Bannon was pressuring congressional leadership to shut down the House Intelligence Committee investigation.
Now in the piece from Vanity Fair, we learn that even though Bannon may be fighting to save Trump from what Robert Mueller will no doubt find, he doesn’t actually hold Trump in such high regard intellectually and doesn’t believe he will complete his first term.
“In private conversations since leaving the White House, Bannon said Trump only has a 30 percent chance of serving out his term, whether he’s impeached or removed by the Cabinet invoking the 25th amendment. That prospect seemed to become more likely in early December when special counsel Robert Mueller secured a plea deal from former national security adviser Michael Flynn. Bannon has also remarked on the toll the office has taken on Trump, telling advisers his former boss has ‘lost a step. “He’s like an 11-year-old child,” Bannon joked to a friend in November,’ wrote Sherman.”
The statement is in total contrast to the praise Bannon has heaped on Trump for his skills as an orator. He once claimed Trump was “the best orator since William Jennings Bryan.” Now, it looks like Bannon is more focused on his own bid for power.
“‘I have power. I can actually drive things in a certain direction,’ said Bannon.”
Now that he’s out of the White House, it appears Bannon is cultivating his own sense of power, even though it would appear his power is actually waning fast. His campaign efforts for Roy Moore in Alabama resulted in a win for the Democrat, Doug Jones. Bannon’s influence does seem to continue with Trump, however, who suffered a loss for following Bannon’s lead of endorsing the accused pedophile.
It seems as though Bannon thinks that without his presence in the White House, Trump is utterly doomed.
“‘The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,’ said Bannon when he left the White House in August.”
If Bannon does run in 2020, he may find out that the people left supporting him are on the margins, all extremists who like to consort with white supremacists. This quote from Stuart Stevens, a Republican political consultant, may sum it up best:
“‘Stuart Stevens, a veteran of five Republican presidential campaigns, told me that Bannon is ‘an odd, strangely repulsive figure who is trying to use the political process to work through personal issues of anger and frustration.’ He added, ‘like many people in their first campaign, he confused his candidate winning with the fantasy voters supported him.'”
Please Steve Bannon run for Pres so we can watch you and Breitbart get destroyed: Bannon Reportedly Mulling 2020 Run For President, Called Trump 'An 11-Year-Old Child' https://t.co/TfmBd8wLew via @mediaite
— (((DeanObeidallah))) (@DeanObeidallah) December 21, 2017
Featured image: Bannon via Flickr, Public Domain.