White House Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley was asked today aboard Air Force One about the White House response to Steve Bannon’s statement of contrition about his comments that Donald Trump Jr. had acted in a treasonous and unpatriotic manner by meeting with an associate of the Russian government to get dirt on Hillary Clinton.
I don’t believe there’s any way back for Mr. Bannon at this point. It is very obvious that Mr. Bannon worked with Mr. Wolff in this particular book. The President has been very clear on his thoughts; issued a four-paragraph statement about Mr. Bannon. Zero ambiguity in those statements. It was obvious that the book was false and fake. The President pointed to that and also pointed that Mr. Bannon is not in it for the country but instead in it for himself. And those statements still stand.
When you go after somebody’s family, in the manner in which he did — two of the President’s children who are serving this nation, sacrificing in their service — it is repugnant, it is grotesque. And I challenge anybody to go and talk about someone else’s family and see if that person doesn’t come back and come back hard.
There may be no way back for Bannon, but I doubt it, even though Bannon’s attack on the president’s son was a stupid move and Trump is naturally quite insulted. Trump nearly offered Mitt Romney the job of secretary of state, despite the vitriolic attacks Romney launched against Trump during the campaign. And, as I’ve written, if Trump strays to closely into the arms of the likes of Mitch McConnell, Paul Ryan, and Chuck Schumer, he may find he needs Bannon to help him get the GOP base to the polls, even if many in the base are furious with Bannon right now.