For months, a mysterious man named Steve Bannon has been hanging out in the White House, joining the National Security Council, and being President of America, a country that he wishes to "deconstruct" from the inside.


We all assumed that Donald Trump, the man elected to the office of President of the United States, was totally on board with all of this, and was indeed great friends with Bannon and knew him well. Especially what with his promises to hire all the best people to do the stuff he didn't feel like doing. But, as it turns out, Donald Trump is now claiming to have no idea who this totally random guy even is. He's just some guy who showed up and started being involved in his campaign, even though he wasn't needed at all, because Donald Trump was running his campaign on his own, anyway!

In a statement to the New York Post published late on Tuesday, Trump responded to a question about whether he was losing confidence in Bannon by claiming he doesn't even know her:

“I like Steve, but you have to remember he was not involved in my campaign until very late,” Trump said. “I had already beaten all the senators and all the governors, and I didn’t know Steve. I’m my own strategist and it wasn’t like I was going to change strategies because I was facing crooked Hillary.”

Whell! This situation certainly has all the markings of a classic screwball comedy, except for the complete and total lack of female characters.

Manic Pixie Dream Wingnut Steve Bannon (convincingly portrayed by Dead Phillip Seymour Hoffman) has never been able to stay in one lane. He's been a Navy officer, a banker, a radio host, acting director of the Biosphere 2, a failed Hollywood producer and the head of a conservative media empire. Now, he's set his sights on the White House! His plan? Just show up and start running things. Will he be able to win the heart of complete and total stranger Donald Trump, even as the his son-in-law (Pauly Shore) tries to tear them apart?

Bringing Up Bannon! It could totally work! Except for one thing. Curiously, on many occasions, Trump has said that he knows Bannon. And knows him well! Like, for instance, he said so right on his very own website, when he announced that Bannon was officially joining the campaign in August!

"I have known Steve and Kellyanne both for many years. They are extremely capable, highly qualified people who love to win and know how to win," Trump said. "I believe we’re adding some of the best talents in politics, with the experience and expertise needed to defeat Hillary Clinton in November and continue to share my message and vision to Make America Great Again. I am committed to doing whatever it takes to win this election, and ultimately become President because our country cannot afford four more years of the failed Obama-Clinton policies which have endangered our financial and physical security."

Weird! Also, as it turns out, Trump has actually known Steve Bannon for a pretty long time. According to statements made by Citizens United President David Bossie to Rebecca Berg of Real Clear Politics, Trump first met Bannon in 2011 when he was considering running against President Obama, and appeared on his radio show many times throughout the years, and was even consulted on Breitbart articles!

“As Breitbart grew, Mr. Trump was constantly in touch with Steve about news articles and doing interviews with his reporters,” Bossie said. Bannon would also launch a radio show, on which Trump appeared as a regular guest; when the program moved under the Breitbart banner in 2014, Trump was Bannon’s first interview. In this election, the site has helpfully amplified Trump’s message and defended him against attacks.

“It was an organic thing,” Bossie said of the relationship between the two men, now five years in the making.

Also, in 2015, Bannon described himself in an email as Trump's campaign manager.

So, either Trump has been in and out of a fugue state lo these many years like so many Days of Our Lives characters (just gonna put it out there that Stefano only died this past December, and could have been in on this the whole time -- after all, Trump did appear on the show once), or he is just super mad at Steve Bannon for stealing his limelight and calling his son-in-law a cuck and is only pretending to have Bannonmnesia.

Regardless, Bannon's team says they felt "blindsided" by the interview, with one official close to Bannon telling the Daily Beast that they plan to "lay low" until they figure out a way forward. Which, I imagine, will likely entail getting Kushner to say Trump totally looked bloated in his Maria Bartiromo interview while Trump secretly listens in on another line, or something to that effect. Hijinks will surely ensue.

[New York PostDaily Beast | Real Clear Politics]

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Robyn Pennacchia

Robyn Pennacchia is a brilliant, fabulously talented and visually stunning angel of a human being, who shrugged off what she is pretty sure would have been a Tony Award-winning career in musical theater in order to write about stuff on the internet. In addition to her work at Wonkette, she also has a biweekly column at Dame. Follow her on Twitter at @RobynElyse

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