Friday is President Trump’s favorite day to fire/constructively dismiss people. Today the official leaving is my friend Chief Strategist Stephen K. Bannon, who was instrumental in Trump’s come-from-behind victory last November.
Whether this is good or bad for the Trump administration depends on where you sit. President Trump is fairly isolated. He has virtually no friends around him in the White House. Bannon’s departure means there will be very little ideological pressure on Trump, which could jeopardize the president’s anti-establishment agenda. The Left and the squish faction in the Republican Party now have the upper hand. National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster, who has been purging plenty of good people, may now run wild.
Trump still has his daughter, Ivanka Trump, and her husband, Jared Kushner, who are to the left of Bannon. I used to think it was kind of creepy that the president put his relatives in positions of authority in the White House. But recently I’ve come to think maybe it’s not such a bad idea. Ivanka and Jared may be Democrats and have bad policy ideas, but Trump has to have some people around him he can trust.
Bannon has already returned to his post as executive chairman at Breitbart News. “I’ve got my hands back on my weapons,” Bannon reportedly said. He apparently wants to work from outside the White House to advance the Trump agenda.
Raheem Kassam, bureau chief for Breitbart London, told Fox News Channel a little while ago that there is no animosity between President Trump and Bannon. “Steve probably feels very liberated right now,” added former Breitbart advisor Kurt Bardella.