Before Steve Bannon was a chief strategist in Donald Trump's White House, he was the executive chairman of Breitbart News. He also served on the board of Cambridge Analytica, a data analytics firm that was largely owned by the Mercer family, who were reportedly at one point investing in Breitbart.
Breitbart provided positive coverage of Donald Trump during the 2016 presidential election, and Bannon called the media apparatus his "weapons" when he returned to the publication before again leaving, according to The Guardian.
"I built a f*cking machine at Breitbart. And now I'm about to go back, knowing what I know, and we're about to rev that machine up. And rev it up we will do," he said.
Whistleblower Christopher Wylie's actions revealed that Cambridge Analytica used the information of 50 million Facebook users alongside publicly available voter records to pinpoint people most likely to vote for Trump, Newsweek reports.
According to Wylie, who spoke at the Emmanuel Centre in London on Monday, Bannon targeted "incels" — "unmarried straight white dudes who couldn't get laid" — at Breitbart during the 2016 election. He claims Bannon believed they were easier to manipulate because they were "lacking economic opportunities" and more susceptible to "conspiratorial thinking."
Wylie also spoke to Amanpour and Company on Monday and echoed these sentiments. He also suggested that the people they were targeting weren't necessarily people they wanted to engage with.
"It was very much in the margins and in the fringes of society to bring and recruit people who would otherwise not necessarily engage in conventional politics, but would engage with particular kinds of ideas that [Cambridge Analytica] promoted online."Wylie suggests that this strategy was necessary to gain the swing states like Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin, which helped Trump secure the White House. Cambridge Analytica reportedly used the "Big 5" personality model — which rates people based on their openness, extroversion, conscientiousness, agreeableness, and neuroticism — to hone in on voters. According to political scientists, left-leaning individuals are typically higher in openness, while right-leaning individuals are higher in conscientiousness.
As The Inquisitr reported, Bannon recently suggested on Fox News' Fox & Friends that Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is "totally compromised" by China, pointing to his son Hunter's former connections with BHR (Shanghai) Equity Investment Fund Management Company, which he recently left. Bannon also highlighted that Hunter got into the Navy with no experience thanks to his father's power, adding that his "whole career" is due to his "access to Joe Biden," which he called "political corruption."