Steve Bannon, Donald Trump’s chief strategist, is “now the president of the United States,” MSNBC host Joe Scarborough said Friday.
Scarborough spent some time on Morning Joe this week blaming Bannon for President Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw the United States from the Paris climate accord. He noted that this means that though Trump holds the title, “President Bannon” is really the one calling the shots at the White House.
“What we saw yesterday is that… Time Magazine was right: Steve Bannon is the president of the United States.”
The Morning Joe host was referring to the publication’s February issue, which featured the White House senior counselor and former Breitbart News executive chair on its cover, calling him “The Great Manipulator.” In April, the New York Times reported that President Trump was still “annoyed” by the issue, the cover story of which was titled “Is Steve Bannon the Second Most Powerful Man in the World?”
On Thursday, Trump announced that the United States is pulling out of the 195-nation Paris climate accord, joining Nicaragua and Syria as the only three countries to not sign the agreement. The move was a fulfillment of his key campaign promise — “America First” — and was another major step towards dismantling the environmental policies implemented by former President Barack Obama.
During his Friday morning show, Scarborough noted that President Trump’s Paris climate accord announcement seemed to herald the return of “President Bannon” as Trump himself doesn’t know anything about the climate agreement.
“Donald Trump doesn’t know anything about policy. Donald Trump doesn’t know anything about politics. Donald Trump doesn’t know anything about anything.”
“You listen to him talk about any topic, and he wanders from sentence to sentence,” the Morning Joe host said.
“So Steve Bannon is now the president of the United States, and that was more clear yesterday than ever before.”
Scarborough also blasted Trump for lying and fear-mongering. The Morning Joe segment opened with clips of both Trump’s inaugural address and his speech about the Paris climate accord. In both of these, the U.S. president painted America in a miserable light, with the economy declining and the entire country falling behind as the rest of the world prospered.
Joe Scarborough contradicted this notion, observing that the United States has been “the top power in the world.” Morning Joe co-host Mika Brzezinski noted that Steve Bannon had his fingerprints all over both of the speeches.
“It’s stupidity,” Scarborough said. “It’s ahistorical.”
“It’s a lie that Donald Trump is telling to himself and to his supporters.”
Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement has drawn sharp criticism from other world leaders. As the Inquisitr reported yesterday, French President Emmanuel Macron called the move “an actual mistake” and took a dig at the U.S. president with his own version of Trump’s election campaign slogan.
Meanwhile, HuffPost echoed the sentiment that Trump’s Thursday decision may indicate that Steve Bannon is back in the president’s good graces and has regained his status in the White House. Prior to this, multiple reports surfaced about Bannon and Jared Kushner, Trump’s son-in-law, feuding over their roles and influence on Trump and his administration.
In April, Donald Trump seemingly tried to distance himself from Steve Bannon, telling the Wall Street Journal that the chief strategist was just “a guy who works for me.” In an interview with the New York Post, he declined to confirm that he still had confidence in Bannon.
“I like Steve, but you have to remember he was not involved in my campaign until very late.”
“I had already beaten all the senators and all the governors, and I didn’t know Steve,” he said.
[Featured Image by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images]