Stephen Bannon stepped down from Breitbart News on Tuesday afternoon, putting an abrupt end to his reign at the far-right website amid a public beef with President Trump.
The exit comes just days after the release of an explosive book, in which Bannon questions Trump’s mental health and lambasts several of the President’s relatives and Cabinet members.
“I’m proud of what the Breitbart team has accomplished in so short a period of time in building out a world-class news platform,” Bannon said in a statement announcing his resignation.
Shortly after the resignation, satelite radio broadcaster SiriusXM announced that it had dropped Bannon’s daily radio show.
Bannon was hired as Breitbart’s executive chairman in 2012 and perpetuated his nationalist agenda through its slanted news coverage until he was tapped as President Trump’s campaign chairman in 2016.
After the election, Bannon was hired as Trump’s chief strategist. He’s widely considered one of the key architects behind Trump’s controversial “America First” agenda.
But Bannon’s relationship with Trump soured after several White House advisers took issue with his combative political approach and white supremacist ties. Amid pushback, Bannon uncermoniously left the White House in August and returned to Breitbart.
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Trump initially insisted that Bannon left on good terms, but the split appears to have left a bitter taste.
It all came to a head after last week’s release of Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.”
Bannon features prominently in the tell-all book and repeatedly lashes out against many of Trump’s associates, including Donald Trump Jr. In a particularly explosive passage, Bannon blasts the Trump son as “treasonous” and “unpatriotic” for inviting several Russian operatives promising “dirt” on Hillary Clinton to a campaign meeting at Trump Tower in June 2016.
The book prompted Trump to fire off a scathing statement denouncing his former right hand man as an egotistical liar who “lost his mind” after leaving the White House.
Brietbart CEO Larry Solov did not discuss Bannon’s recent spat with the President, simply stating, “Steve is a valued part of our legacy, and we will always be grateful for his contributions.”
But the New York Times reported that Bannon’s resignation was forced by conservative mega donor Rebekah Mercer, who denounced Bannon after the release of “Fire and Fury.”
Mercer, who has previously been a big backer of Bannon’s far-right agenda, said in an unusual public statement last week that she does not “support his recent actions or statements.”
With News Wire Services