Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon is attacking President Trump’s daughter and son-in-law, saying they’re the “railhead of all bad decisions” in the White House.
In his sharpest public critique of the Trump administration to date, Bannon branded Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner as “Javanka” in an interview with Vanity Fair this Thursday. According to Bannon, Ivanka was a “fount of bad advice” during the 2016 campaign. He even claimed that he once called her “the queen of leaks” to her face.
Bannon said Kushner pushing Trump to fire FBI Director James Comey was “the dumbest political decision in modern political history, bar none,” adding that the move was a “self-inflicted wound of massive proportions.”
In a remarkable moment from the interview, Bannon conceded that the original vision of the Trump candidacy had been lost.
“The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,” he said.
That being said, Bannon suggested that he still has the ear of Trump.
In private, Bannon told people he was disillusioned with Trump’s shambolic governing style. Trump, in turn, sees Bannon as a self-promoter. “The president views Steve as just a guy who works for him,” a White House official said.
While the two men harbor contempt for each other that can ignite into rage, they can’t quit each other, either. Since Bannon left the West Wing, he’s had five phone calls with Trump, most initiated by the president, according to the White House official. “The few conversations Steve and the president have had since he was fired this summer have primarily been opportunities for Steve to beg for his job back,” said the White House official. A Bannon spokesperson countered, “anyone around Steve since he left the White House can see he is very happy now out of the White House!”
He acknowledges that he wasn’t very effective in the White House.
“I realize in hindsight I was just a staffer, and I’m not a good staffer. I had influence, I had a lot of influence, but just influence.”
Now that he’s back at Breitbart, he says he has “power.”
“I can actually drive things in a certain direction.”
Featured image via scree grab (YouTube)