Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon has directly addressed a report claiming that he supposedly told others that President Trump has only a 30 percent chance of finishing his first term in office. The same report claimed that he informed the president that he could be at risk for being removed from office under the 25th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution rather than through impeachment.
Under a procedure set forth in the amendment ratified in 1967, the vice president and a majority of Cabinet members can seek to remove the president if he or she is unable to carry out the duties of the office.
The Steve Bannon allegations were originally published by the liberal Vanity Fair magazine and were based on one or two unnamed sources who supposedly overheard Bannon’s remarks. Vanity Fair also claimed President Trump told Bannon that he was unfamiliar with the 25th Amendment.
In remarks at the Values Voter Summit today in Washington, D.C., Bannon — the Breitbart News boss — talked about what he described as a populist, nationalist, conservative revolt in which he is backing 2018 primary challenges against some “Never Trump” GOP establishment Republicans in Congress who are insufficiently supportive of the president’s legislative agenda. He then addressed the Vanity Fair allegations head on.
“…[The revolt] that drove Donald Trump to victory, that drove Judge Moore to victory, that will drive 15 candidates to victory in 2018. And I hate to break the news to Graydon Carter and the good folks at Vanity Fair, but yes, President Trump is not only going to finish this term, he’s going to win 400 electoral votes in 2020.”
Former Trump adviser Steve Bannon: "Pres. Trump's not only going to finish this term, he's going to win with 400 electoral votes in 2020." pic.twitter.com/uzX4epfStq— ABC News (@ABC) October 14, 2017
If the Vanity Fair account is incorrect or an example of fake news, it would not be the first time that a news outlet ran with a lurid story about Trump that later turned out to be based on sketchy, anonymous sourcing.
Parenthetically, if the Democrats take control of the U.S. House following the 2018 midterm elections, impeachment could gain some traction. Trump was a former Democrat and independent before running for president as a first-time candidate on the GOP ticket.
Judge Roy Moore defeated appointed U.S. Senator Luther Strange in the Alabama Republican primary on August 15. President Trump endorsed Strange, but has vowed to throw his full support behind Moore, and even alluded to that before the primary voting took place. Moore is the heavy favorite to win the seat in the general election on December 12.
When Bannon left the White House, he implied that he felt he could be more effective advancing the Trump America First agenda from the outside. Former Trump national security adviser Dr. Sebastian Gorka has expressed similar sentiments.
Separately, Bill Clinton’s former pollster has argued that President Trump’s low approval ratings underestimate the actual support by the American people for the controversial commander-in-chief’s agenda. Trump is getting high marks for the federal government’s hurricane response, for his stewardship of the economy, and for fighting terrorism among other issues, pollster Mark Penn maintained.
Do you think that President Trump will win 400 electoral votes (up from 306 in 2016) in the 2020 general election as Steve Bannon claims?
[Featured Image by Brynn Anderson/AP Images