This is the kind of stuff we need to hear MORE of from the Trump administration.
While the President never likes to attack people who have treated him well in the past, he has to get over that sense of loyalty when it comes to the alt-right.
Over the weekend in Charlottesville the alt-right decided to ally itself with white nationalists and white supremacists and that decision should have been the final nail in their coffin.
In a demonstration they called “Unite the Right,” the alt-right instead united with evil ideology and anti-conservative philosophy. As conservatives, we should now with one voice be able to say that we will have nothing to do with the alt-right.
Even the so-called “father” of the alt-right agrees with me…
In a rare interview (with a far left magazine to boot), one of President Trump’s closest advisers, Steve Bannon, argued that “ethno-nationalism” was for “fringe” “losers,” and “clowns.” Bannon further told the American Prospect that “we” (presumably the Trump administration or conservatives) had to help “crush” the white nationalist movement.
Bannon had actually reached out to Robert Kuttner, a journalist with the American Prospect, a leftwing magazine, to ostensibly talk about an article he had done on trade with China.
The conversation did center on trade and how Bannon was attempting to influence our nation’s trade policies, but there was a moment when Kuttner shifted the conversation. He asked Bannon, who is an open “nationalist on trade,” about the white nationalists who are attempting to tie themselves to the Trump administration.
I asked Bannon about the connection between his program of economic nationalism and the ugly white nationalism epitomized by the racist violence in Charlottesville and Trump’s reluctance to condemn it. Bannon, after all, was the architect of the strategy of using Breitbart to heat up white nationalism and then rely on the radical right as Trump’s base.
He dismissed the far right as irrelevant and sidestepped his own role in cultivating it: “Ethno-nationalism—it’s losers. It’s a fringe element. I think the media plays it up too much, and we gotta help crush it, you know, uh, help crush it more.”
“These guys are a collection of clowns,” he added.
From his lips to Trump’s ear.
“The Democrats,” he said, “the longer they talk about identity politics, I got ’em. I want them to talk about racism every day. If the left is focused on race and identity, and we go with economic nationalism, we can crush the Democrats.”
Bannon later said that he though his conversation with Kuttner was “off the record,” though Kuttner said Bannon never mentioned it being off the record. There is also a rumor floating about that Bannon made the call and gave the interview in an attempt to distract the media from Trump’s missteps on Charlottesville.
Either way, the interview was an important window into Bannon’s thought process and a wonderful repudiation of the white nationalist movement (and the alt-right) that were trying to tie themselves to Bannon and the Trump administration.
Bannon is right, the white nationalists are “losers.” They are a “fringe element,” and “a collection of clowns,” and they deserve to be “crushed.”