WASHINGTON — After his ouster from the West Wing on Friday, ex-White House chief strategist Steve Bannon declared the Trump presidency that his brand of populist, right-wing conservatives helped make a reality is “over.”
“The Trump presidency that we fought for, and won, is over,” Bannon said in an interview with The Weekly Standard. “We still have a huge movement, and we will make something of this Trump presidency. But that presidency is over. It’ll be something else.”
“There’ll be all kinds of fights, and there’ll be good days and bad days, but that presidency is over,” he added, according to the Weekly Standard.
Bannon, who left right-wing news site Breitbart to join Donald Trump’s campaign in 2016, remained on at the White House as one of the President’s most controversial advisers — and the man generally perceived as the driving force behind Trump’s “nationalist” ideology.
Multiple sources said Friday that Bannon had been fired from his position. Bannon did not return requests for comment Friday.
Bannon’s far-right ideals could be seen woven throughout the first seven months of Donald Trump’s presidency, and has been cited as one of the strongest links between the Trump administration and his alt-right supporters.
He headed directly back to Breitbart on Friday — and even chaired Friday’s editorial meeting.
Just hours later, Bannon’s comments were published by The Weekly Standard. In the interview, Bannon said he voluntarily chose to leave the White House.
“On August 7, I talked to (Chief of Staff John) Kelly and to the President, and I told them that my resignation would be effective the following Monday, on the 14,” he said. “I’d always planned on spending one year. Gen. Kelly has brought in a great new system, but I said it would be best. I want to get back to Breitbart.”
Bannon is just one of many high-profile departures from the White House in recent months, including chief of staff Reince Priebus, multiple communications directors and press secretary Sean Spicer.
Bannon told the Weekly Standard that a large part of his role at the White House was to take on the Republican establishment, which Trump agreed with.
“I said, ‘look, I’ll focus on going after the establishment,” Bannon said. “He said, ‘good, I need that.’ I said, ‘look, I’ll always be here covering for you.'”
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