FILE - In this Nov. 9, 2017, file photo, Steve Bannon, speaks during an event in Manchester, N.H. Breitbart News Network announced Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018, that Bannon is stepping down as chairman of the conservative news site. (AP Photo/Mary Schwalm, File)

Bannon out as chairman of Breitbart News, loses radio show

Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is out at Breitbart News after public break with President Donald Trump

Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is stepping down as chairman of Breitbart News Network after a public break with President Donald Trump.

Breitbart announced Tuesday that Bannon would step down as executive chairman of the conservative news site, less than a week after Bannon’s explosive criticisms of Trump and his family were published in a new book.

A report on the Breitbart website quotes Bannon saying, “I’m proud of what the Breitbart team has accomplished in so short a period of time in building out a world-class news platform.”

Trump lashed out at Bannon for comments made in Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” which questions the president’s fitness for office. As Trump aides called him disloyal and disgraceful, the president branded his former chief strategist on Twitter as “Sloppy Steve,” an apparent reference to Bannon’s often unkempt appearance, and declared that “he lost his mind” when he was pushed out of the White House last August.

The president was livid about Bannon’s remarks — not just at the insults about his family, but also at his former strategist’s apparent intent to take credit for Trump’s election victory and political movement, according to a White House official and two outside advisers not authorized to speak publicly about internal conversations.

After days of silence amid withering criticism from his former colleagues and his largest benefactor, Bannon tried to make amends. He issued a statement Sunday praising the president’s eldest son, Donald Trump Jr., whom he was quoted accusing of treasonous behaviour in the book. Bannon did not apologize for his criticism of the president’s daughter and son-in-law, Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner, with whom he had squabbled inside the West Wing.

Bannon’s departure from Breitbart came as a shock to some of his allies. One said Bannon was telling people as recently as Monday that he expected to stay on.

Bannon’s breakup with Breitbart is also costing him his daily show on the conservative talk station on satellite radio network SiriusXM. The company announced it is ending its relationship with Bannon, stating its programing agreement is with Breitbart.

Inside the White House, Bannon was viewed as the keeper of Trump’s nationalistic flame, charting the progress on the president’s promises to his base on dry erase boards in his office. But Bannon was marginalized in the months before his ouster over Trump’s concerns that the top aide was being viewed as an Oval Office puppeteer.

Trump had stayed in touch with the Breitbart head after he left the White House in August, including consulting him on last month’s Alabama Senate race. But since Bannon’s quotes in the Wolff book emerged, the White House began sending Republicans and conservative figures a clear message: Trump or Bannon.

The chief strategist had lost many allies in the West Wing after chief of staff John Kelly’s staff shakeup and was blamed for some of the infighting that had paralyzed the White House. Some West Wing aides in recent days had made little effort to hide their happiness that Bannon had suffered such a public rebuke.

The White House did not immediately respond to the news of Bannon’s ouster, but press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders last week called on the conservative site — which has been a steadfast backer of the president — to “look at and consider” parting ways with Bannon.

Despite the setback, Bannon has told confidants that he believes Trump, after a cooling-off period, will again seek his counsel, noting that the president often maintains contact with aides he has fired. But some Trump allies hope the president will permanently cut off his former strategist, and the fate of Bannon’s insurgency against the Republican establishment is now in doubt.

On Monday, deputy press secretary Hogan Gidley said Bannon’s apology did not alter his standing with the president. “I don’t believe there’s any way back for Mr. Bannon at this point,” Gidley said.

__

Lemire reported from New York. AP Washington Bureau Chief Julie Pace and AP writer Catherine Lucey contributed to this report.

Zeke Miller And Jonathan Lemire, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Advocates call safe drug supply a victory but worry about logistics in pandemic

Pandemic contributes to scarce supply, advocates worried about potential impact on the streets

Greater Victoria survey shows third of respondents did not pay, or partially paid rent for April

Survey of 70 respondents says 40 per cent expect they will not be able to pay May rent

City of Victoria looks to shift tens of millions in 2020 budget due to COVID-19

Mayor Lisa Helps offers her daily municipal, provincial and federal updates

Nanaimo, Royal Jubilee to be Vancouver Island’s COVID-19 frontline hospitals

Other Island hospitals will be admitting COVID-19 patients and will be used in a support role

BC Transit extends free fare, installs vinyl barriers in some buses

Free fare will now be offered until April 30

B.C. clears more acute hospital beds as COVID-19 case growth slows

Province holding about 40% of beds empty for peak still to come

75-year-old woman rescued from Cowichan Lake

Victim taken to hospital, but expected to recover

Not to become bored the game plan for COVID-19

Board game with an Island map developed by Island family just the remedy for filling time at home

As 500K+ apply for emergency benefit, Trudeau says aid coming for Canadians left behind

Canada Emergency Response Benefit provides $2,000 per month

UPDATE: UK PM Boris Johnson moved to intensive care after COVID-19 symptoms worse

He has been quarantined in his Downing St. residence since being diagnosed with COVID-19 on March 26

Travellers, travel agents ‘in agony’ over refund policies and customer service

Many Canadian carriers are offering customers flights rebookings or travel vouchers — but not refunds

Introverted and extroverted kids likely to react differently to COVID-19 restrictions

B.C. child psychologist says your parenting approach can’t be one-size fits all in social isolation

B.C. begins taking submissions for $2M COVID-19 research fund

Rural health, impact of shifting hospital resources among priorities

Most Read