During an appearance on Friday’s edition of HBO’s Real Time, former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon spoke to Bill Maher about accusations that the Democratic Party rigged the Iowa caucuses against Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, Newsweek reports.
Bannon expressed an affinity for Sanders, claiming that his populism has correctly identified the problems in the U.S. and is similar to Donald Trump‘s. He also slammed the Democratic Party for allegedly suppressing Sanders voters in the Iowa caucus results, which were delayed in a rollout that had little transparency from the state’s Democratic Party and was riddled with discrepancies.
After Maher suggested that Republicans only win due to the Electoral College, which he said is “rigged” in their favor, Bannon hit back and said Democrats “whine about everything.”
“It’s that mentality that has you in this place today, and that place today is you have Trump about to run the tables,” Bannon said. “You have a totally divided Democratic Party.”
“Because nobody sat there after 2016 and said, ‘Why did we lose?’ The same arrogance that you saw with the people in Brooklyn who would not send Hillary Clinton to Michigan…Trump reached out to these working class people and connected with them.”
The 66-year-old political strategist later slammed the Democratic leaders for their behavior in Iowa and said they pulled the rug from under Sanders after they realized he was going to win.
“Bernie has been screwed by the Democratic Party,” he said.
Bannon also pointed to the Democratic Party’s propping up of billionaire Michael Bloomberg, whose presidential run was allegedly sparked to take down Trump, although Sanders’ campaign says its purpose is to sideline the Vermont senator.
Bannon’s view on the Iowa debacle echoed those of many progressive commentators, including YouTube host Kyle Kulinksi.
“Think about the level of coordination it takes to try to pull off such a brazen fraudulent move,” he said before suggesting that the caucuses were rigged against Sanders.
In particular, Kulinksi believes that the Iowa Democratic Party, the Democratic National Committee (DNC), and CNN worked together to ensure the results of the Iowa caucuses were timed for Pete Buttigieg‘s town hall on Thursday.
According to Bannon — who admits he disagrees with Sanders’ solutions — the 78-year-old politician’s supporters should consider voting for Trump. Per Business Insider, he urged them to either not vote or vote for the real estate mogul and claimed that the actions of the Democratic Party would likely help Trump get elected regardless.