Tag Archives: Steve Bannon

Bannon needs to do ‘hard time’

Steve Bannon, Donald Trump’s former senior adviser and designated hit man, is now set to serve four months in prison for defying a congressional subpoena.

I won’t quibble over the length of the sentence. Prosecutors sought a six-month prison term. They got most of what they sought. That’s fine.

I do, though, want Bannon to serve the hardest time possible given the nature of his crime. He thumbed his nose at a duly constituted congressional committee’s demand that he testify about what he knew during 1/6 insurrection. It is a form of judicial obstruction, which to my mind makes it a damn serious crime.

He’ll come out of the slammer in four months, likely smirking and preening the way he does. At least he will carry an addendum to his background he likely didn’t anticipate when he entered the political world: convicted felon.


Verdict scores victory for Congress

Steve Bannon’s conviction today in a federal courtroom on two counts of contempt of Congress gives the lie to the notion that Congress lacks any way to enforce charges it brings against those who break the law.

The House select 1/6 committee had cited Bannon — a former key adviser to Donald Trump — for contempt of Congress when Bannon refused to answer a subpoena issued by the panel. Congress sent the matter to the Department of Justice, which then indicted Bannon.

The federal trial ended after just a few days and then delivered the goods to Bannon: Guilty on both counts!

Bannon the blowhard now faces two years — max! — in federal prison.

This is an important victory for the rule of law in this country. Steve Bannon sought to defy that rule by giving the House panel the finger in his refusal to testify about what he knew about the 1/6 insurrection.

The House panel, chaired by Democrat Bennie Thompson, instead turned to the DOJ, which is solely responsible for bringing criminal charges against those accused of federal crimes.

It had been fashionable to scoff at Congress’s efforts to make witnesses follow the rules. Important men and women have too often thumbed their noses at congressional committees, thinking that they don’t have to do what Congress orders them to do.

Today, the pendulum swung back in Congress’s favor.

I’m glad to see the verdict that delivered justice to someone who thought he was bigger than the law.


Who’s the ‘gutless’ one?

Steve Bannon, the newly convicted felon who once served as a policy adviser to Donald J. Trump, today offered a truly laughable epithet at a key congressional committee.

Bannon came out of the federal courthouse today after being convicted of two counts of contempt of Congress and bellowed that the House select committee examining the 1/6 insurrection is “gutless” because its members wouldn’t testify in the trial.

The committee is “gutless”? Really … Steve?

What in the world how should we view your refusal to answer a congressional summons demanding you testify before the 1/6 committee? Bannon kept insisting he had nothing to hide, yet he decided to stiff the 1/6 committee by refusing to obey a lawfully ordered subpoena.

Now, for the convicted felon to lash out at a legally constituted congressional committee with a damnation he should wear himself is laughable … except that I am not laughing.


What would happen if we did this?

I watched Steve Bannon’s tirade outside the courtroom today as jury selection in his federal contempt of Congress trial was completed. I was struck by this question: What would happen if you or I thought to thumb our nose at a congressional subpoena?

If it were me, I would be locked up and kept in the cooler until my trial began.

The House 1/6 committee summoned Bannon — a former Donald Trump senior political adviser — to testify before the panel in its quest to find the truth behind the 1/6 insurrection. Bannon said, in effect, “f*** you” to the committee. The Department of Justice, acting within its authority, then indicted Bannon on contempt of Congress.

Well, today Bannon challenged the legitimacy of the House committee’s very existence, let alone its legal authority to subpoena him. Then he launched into The Big Lie mantra that “Donald Trump won the 2020 election” and that “Joe Biden is an illegitimate president.”

That is his opinion. Bannon also is full of horse dookey … but that’s just my opinion.

It astounds me beyond measure how these individuals think they can defy what I am certain is a duly and legally constituted congressional committee charged with the task of investigating what most of us believe is a crime against the government.

Yet there is Steve Bannon, a fire-breathing ideologue who spews The Big Lie about vote fraud — which has been thoroughly and roundly discredited — while giving the middle finger to a congressional probe.

I shudder to think what would happen if I were to demonstrate such arrogance.


Let the DOJ make the call

A non-surprising vote occurred tonight.

The U.S. House select committee examining the 1/6 insurrection on Capitol Hill voted unanimously to charge former Trump administration policy guru Steve Bannon with contempt of Congress.

The issue goes to the full House. Then it goes to the U.S. attorney’s office in the District of Columbia. And then it falls on the Justice Department, led by Attorney General Merrick Garland, to pursue a criminal prosecution of  Bannon.

Oh, how I hope DOJ follows through.

The unanimous vote by the House panel is quite satisfying, given that two Republicans — Reps. Liz Cheney and Adam Kinzinger — serve with seven Democrats. So, it’s a bipartisan vote to charge Bannon with a criminal act.

The panel had summoned Bannon to testify. He refused, citing executive privilege. He and the former POTUS, though, weren’t meeting on 1/6 to discuss national public policy matters. They were meeting to ascertain how Donald Trump could overturn the 2020 presidential election, which Joe Biden won … bigly.

It’s going to pass through the full House. It then will head to DOJ.

Steve Bannon needs to face the music.


Contempt of Congress: what now?

Steve Bannon, a one-time key aide to the former president of U.S., is facing contempt of Congress charges from the panel that has summoned him to testify about what he knows regarding 1/6.

Bannon has refused to testify until the courts weigh in on Donald Trump’s contention that he is entitled to presidential executive privilege.

Here is the question I am pondering: What can Congress do to enforce the contempt charge? Answer, as near as I can tell: Not much … just yet.

The Justice Department has to determine whether to bring criminal charges against Bannon, or against any other of the former Trumpkins who are likely to resist the subpoenas that the House select committee has issued.

The panel wants to know the truth behind what occurred within the White House on 1/6. So do many millions of Americans want to know. I am one of them.

Explainer-What’s at stake for Trump allies facing ‘contempt of Congress’? (msn.com)

Bannon is the keeper of plenty of secrets, I am certain. He needs to share them with the nation and the world.

Let me be clear about one more thing. What happened on 1/6 posed a dire threat to the very government we all cherish. The riot on Capitol Hill could have ended far differently than it did had the terrorists been allowed to achieve their mission to “Hang Mike Pence!” and to stop the certification of the 2020 presidential election result.

Bannon and his former boss have no right to invoke executive privilege. I hope the DOJ sees it that way, too.


What a shocker! Kelly says Trump ‘not up to job’?

Imagine my total non-surprise!

Departing White House chief of staff John Kelly reportedly told aides many times that Donald Trump “isn’t up to the job” of president of the United States.

Wow! Who would’ve thought that? Shocking, I tell ya! Simply shocking!

The New York Times is reporting that Kelly, who’s leaving the Trump administration later this week, called the chief of staff post the “worst job in the world.” That’s really saying something, given that the retired Marine Corps four-star general saw more than his share of combat defending this country.

I wanted Kelly to succeed when he took over from Reince Priebus as White House chief of staff; he had served previously as homeland security secretary. Trump canned Priebus and called Kelly over from DHS to rein in a White House staff that had spiraled out of control.

Kelly enjoyed some initial success. He got rid of Steve Bannon, the former Brietbart News exec who served as a senior policy guru. He canned Anthony “The Mooch” Scaramucci as White House communications director.

But then . . .

Trump just couldn’t be corralled. Kelly couldn’t manage the president. He couldn’t persuade him to follow the normal rules of procedure.

There is far more than a hint of believability in what the New York Times is reporting. Perhaps that explains why Kelly, who reportedly pledged to stay until after the 2020 election, is departing early.

I only can add: The truth hurts, Mr. President.

‘Fire and Fury’ heading for the nightstand book pile

Donald Trump has become Michael Woolff’s greatest promoter.

Trump, the president of the United States, calls a book by Woolff “fake” and “trash,” and he sought to block its publication.

The result? Sales of Woolff’s “Fire and Fury” account of the Trump campaign and presidency are exploding. They’re flying through the roof.

I plan this weekend to join the crowd I’m sure has lined up at Barnes & Noble right here in little ol’ Amarillo, Texas. I also hope they bought plenty of copies of the book.

I’m not not usually motivated to buy books on the basis of hysterical publicity. This publication has prompted me to respond instantly.

“Fire and Fury” was published four days earlier than planned. Why? The president’s furious response to remarks attributed to his former chief political strategist, Stephen Bannon, pushed the book to the shelves earlier than anticipated.

What is hilarious are the denials coming from Trump and his White House team. Think about this for a moment. The folks who are trashing this book are the same folks who, according to longtime GOP political operative Steve Schmidt:

  • Have questioned whether Barack Obama was born in the United States.
  • Said “millions of illegal immigrants” voted for Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election.
  • Said that Trump’s voice on the “Access Hollywood” tape wasn’t really Trump’s voice.
  • Argued that Trump’s inaugural crowd was larger than Obama’s.

Trump now says Woolff didn’t have access to White House staff. Woolff says he did. I believe Woolff. Why? Well, Trump has proven himself to be a pathological liar.

The president also says Bannon was a nobody in the White House, that he was a bit player, that he didn’t play a significant role in crafting Trump’s remarkable campaign victory in 2016. Hmm. What about all those pictures of Trump and Bannon huddled around the Oval Office desk, or of Trump placing his hands on Bannon’s shoulders? Were they Photo Shopped?

Naw. They’re real. Again, I think Trump is, um, lying yet again.

I hope I can find a copy of “Fire and Fury.”

Imagine top aides for Obama, ‘W’ turning on the boss

Stephen Bannon’s assertion in a new book that Donald Trump Jr. might have committed an act of “treason” by meeting with a Russian lawyer in June 2016 brings to mind a fascinating observation.

It didn’t come from me originally. I heard it from Jeffrey Toobin, a legal analyst for CNN. Toobin said it would be unconscionable for David Axelrod to turn on Barack Obama or Karl Rove to do the same thing to George W. Bush.

Those two former White House strategists and key political aides were loyal to the boss and remain so to this day. Bannon presents another situation altogether.

He has said that Trump Jr.’s meeting with the Russian legal eagle constituted potentially “unpatriotic” and “treasonous” activity. They met, according to a book, “Fire and Fury,” written by David Wolff, to discuss dirt on Hillary Rodham Clinton. The inference is that Don Jr. might have colluded with Russians seeking to influence the 2016 presidential election outcome.

The revelation made public has enraged the president. He says Bannon “lost his mind” when he was fired from his job as chief strategist for Donald Trump. He argues that Bannon had little influence or impact on the White House.

We might be witnessing an unprecedented unraveling of a presidential administration. It does appear to be unusual in the extreme that someone who once had the president’s ear to turn on him in the manner that has occurred.

What’s more, the reaction from the president does have the appearance of near-panic within the White House.

Toobin does pose a fascinating query. Can you imagine Presidents Obama and Bush being torpedoed in this fashion?

I cannot.

Trump torches Bannon

I guess Donald Trump and Stephen Bannon won’t be exchanging Christmas cards any longer.

Bannon, the former chief strategist in the Trump White House, has decided to turn on his former boss-friend by writing in a new book that Don Trump Jr.’s meeting with a Russian lawyer during the 2016 presidential campaign was “unpatriotic” and “treasonous.” Oh, and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner and former campaign chief Paul Manafort were there, too.

The president’s response may go down in political annals as a classic. He fired off a statement that declared that Bannon has “lost his mind,” that he had little to do with the victory that Trump scored in the 2016 election and that Bannon was the primary reason Republican U.S. Senate candidate Roy Moore lost an Alabama election he was supposed to win.

As one CNN analyst said, Trump in effect turned a flamethrower on his former top White House aide.

According to CNN: “Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating 17 candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party,” Trump said in the statement. 

Well … I guess this means Trump no longer has any relationship with Bannon. To think that Bannon declared after he was let go from his White House job that he would be the president’s best friend and most loyal political ally. Bannon pledged to carry Trump’s message forward.

What does Bannon’s published statement mean to the investigation that special counsel Robert Mueller is conducting? Hmm. I suppose it might mean that it piques the curiosity of Mueller’s legal team enough to question Bannon extensively on what he means by “unpatriotic” and “treasonous.”

Oh, the hits just keep coming.