President Trump is courting danger by losing the counsel of Steve Bannon, who helped keep Trump focusing on his populist message during the campaign and his first months in the White House.
From a piece I have running now on the NBC News website:
Washington is a sports-obsessed town — and that’s not a reference to the Redskins or the Nationals. Its sport is politics. And most people, whether journalists or politicians, are focused on who is winning, who is up, and — perhaps most delightedly — who is down.
Steve Bannon’s apparent conversion — at least for now — from the president’s closest political confidant to a “you-are-dead-to-me” outcast is not just a spectacle for analysts who, to use a reality-show title Trump might appreciate, want to figure out who is “the biggest loser.”
It represents the possibility that Trump’s most important adviser — and even, teacher — is heading into the political wilderness. As a result, Trump will be denied access to the voice that, perhaps more than any other, has facilitated his mind meld with the populist Republican base. Lose that connection, and 2020, not to mention 2018, may be lost.
Trump has tried to minimize Bannon’s influence. But, in fact, Bannon first advised Trump and helped mold his populist thinking seven years ago, when a mutual associate, David Bossie, shepherded Bannon over to Trump Tower in 2010 to discuss a possible Trump run for president in 2012.
You can read the rest of the article here.