Why Did The Government Shut Down? Here’s How It Happened

The government is shut down.

That is a very real event with very real consequences. That’s not just some fear-mongering take. Real people are affected by this. Sure, the average RedState reader is probably not directly affected by the shutdown, but it is a noteworthy and newsworthy event. The government has run out of funding for the time being.

There is currently a lot of finger-pointing. Who is to blame? Is it the Republicans or the Democrats? Is it Donald Trump or is it Chuck Schumer? Did Paul Ryan do this? Did Mitch McConnell? Did Nancy Pelosi?

It’s not a one-word answer. We have to go back a couple of days to figure it out.

Going into the negotiations, the Republicans had a plan. Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell had a plan: A continuing resolution with CHIP fully funded and no DACA extension. It was an easy political victory. Fund the government and make the Democrats make the hard choice: Are children worth less than illegal immigrants?

That was the plan right up until 8:37 a.m., when President Donald Trump posted the following to Twitter.

All of a sudden, the Republican leverage was gone.

Democrats seized on the opportunity. “Republicans want to let your children die!” they screamed. Republicans scrambled, offering CHIP in their bill anyway. The Democrats were emboldened, and demanded more. The power of the negotiations was in the Democrats’ hands. Goodbye plan.

From the time House Republicans passed their bill to the time it got to the Senate, they tried to regain control of the message. “We have funded CHIP for a historic six-year term.” It had never been that long. “The Democrats are prioritizing illegal immigrants over our children,” they said. While that point is undoubtedly true, it was too late. The Democrats had their own momentum. The intended to use it.

The Republicans had no Plan B. There was no whip count because there was no plan of action. McConnell called a 10 p.m. vote, which appeared to be little more than a show vote. In keeping with the messaging, the Republicans proved (again, correctly) that the Democrats were, by and large, favoring illegal immigrants – people who broke the law to be in this country – over the children who desperately needed access to CHIP.

The Democrats blocked the bill. They said they would block and they did block it.

That brings us to this morning, a time when the sun rises over the desolate ruins of Washington D.C. There is no government funding, and people will be negatively affected by it.

The Democrats shut down the government. But they were able to, they had the oomph, because what was an easy path for Republicans was made infinitely harder by a President who simply refuses to rein in his social media use and refrain from posting his every thought.

This should have been a Republican victory. Although this situation is salvageable, the better message is lost now, thanks to a single tweet.

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BREAKING: Schumer-Trump Meeting Ends, but Was a Deal Made?

Chuck Schumer has been in the White House with President Donald Trump over the looming government shutdown, but the meeting appears to be over for the moment.

Walking by cameras, Schumer essentially told the media that there is no new news.

And the Democrats’ leaders appear to be conferencing now.

Right now, we still don’t know what to expect. There is no significant movement toward resolving the issue of funding the government OR letting it shut down. Senate Democrats appear to be holding the line on refusing to allow the government to continue to operate without a formal decision on DACA.

The Republicans do not have the 60 votes needed to break a filibuster in the Senate and move the continuing resolution forward. That makes this a Democrat shutdown. Which is why #SchumerShutdown is now trending on Twitter.

And here’s a nice little tidbit that you may be interested in retweeting:


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This Shutdown Fight Could Have Been Avoided If We Stopped Doing One Thing

Behold, the place where Government will die at midnight (apparently).

It’s Friday, January 19th. As of midnight tonight, the government is set to shut down if there is no continuing resolution passed to fund the government.

At issue is the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy, which the Democrats are using as the reasoning for blocking the House’s CR – a block that will lead to the supposedly apocalyptic government shutdown.

God forbid a government as dysfunctional as ours has proven to be over the last several years doesn’t do anything for a while.

This whole shutdown fight irritates me, though, because it is a symptom of a larger issue our government has been allowing to slide by for a while now: Why the hell do we have to keep having these all-or-nothing fights?

Should DACA in any way be a part of the discussion when talking about funding the government? Of course not. That is ridiculous. DACA is, at best, tangentially related to the issue of what government money is spent on. But, it is a centerpiece of this spending fight. Why? Because the Republicans and the Democrats have for years now allowed multiple, unrelated issues to slip into bills to help them score political points.

It’s sickening.

This is not really a fight we should be having right now, and it’s foolish that we are forced to endure this fight. There should at no point be a major comprehensive bill offering funding AND whatever political pet projects just happen to be out there. Ideally, seeing as the House’s responsibility is to the purse strings of the government’s wallet, there should be a series of bills, carefully weighed and analyzed for what is necessary and proper spending, and then debated and negotiated. Then, it would move over to the Senate, where the same thing happens there.

Then, to the President’s office. One department’s funding looks good, so it’s signed. Another looks questionable, so let’s reject that and work on it again. So on, and so forth.

Instead, we have this comprehensive piece of legislation, which is just a continuing resolution, that, according to Democrats, must include continuing DACA, apparently. Take Senator Tim Kaine’s statement: “Congress should remain in session with no recess until we work out a long-term bipartisan budget deal that addresses all issues.” Issues which, apparently include DACA. Why? Because they say it does for some reason.

The issue of CHIP funding has been resolved. The funding of government is ready to go. But, Democrats still won’t vote for the bill because there is nothing about DACA in it. It’s the only issue left.

Call me idealistic, naive, or whatever else you may want to if you disagree, but this whole “We must get everything funded and include unrelated issues or else the government shuts down!” fight is insanely stupid. At no point when discussing the basic role of what would become Congress did the Founders seem to think “And if Congress can’t agree on one little policy, the entire government should shut down.” The entire system was structured so that debate and order could be maintained while the government functioned as it should. Provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, you know… operate within parameters.

And, sure, part of the reason this is such an issue is because Trump can’t control his thoughts and words. If negotiations had gone better, if Trump hadn’t said shithole, if Durbin hadn’t gone against his own interests and leaked that Trump said shithole, if Kelly’s voice were louder and Trump’s softer, if the immigration wing of the party weren’t insane about DACA which otherwise enjoys immense popularity in the country, then we wouldn’t even be here.

But, here we are. Those things did happen. They became part of the discussion. And because that happened, because politicians are too busy thinking of what points they can score over what would actually be best for the country, we are stuck in a position where we have to deal with this. It’s been a long time coming, and ever since we allowed a 2000+ page health care reform package passed without a single Republican vote, we have been slowly but surely making the every fight about as many issues at once as possible.

It’s like we have some sort of weird legislative ADD, and we have to address every shiny object we can see.

Comprehensivism should die. We should be better than this. But, we’re not. The fabulism of politics is more important than political policy in today’s world, and that should sicken a lot more people than it seems to.

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Wow! Mark Steyn Defends White Supremacists In Anti-Hispanic Rant

Once upon a time, it used to be politically uncouth to offer any amount of public support to folks who believed in white supremacy and actively think that brown people have no place in this country.

It used to be that America was, in fact, a land of opportunity. Even kids whose lives were upended when they were born or brought here under less than legal circumstances nonetheless had a chance to achieve the American Dream – a dream we are still supposed to believe in.

However, these two facts have been totally eradicated in the face of absolute paranoia. A supposed invasion that will completely decimate American culture and change the face of America as we know it has been going on for decades and those people are just about ready to launch their attack and doom us all.

Luckily, we have warriors like Mark Steyn to tell it like it is and defend the people who think the brown folks are out to get us.

Here’s a quote, presented by Mediaite, from Steyn on why we should be agreeing with the paranoids.

“Chris Cuomo went on to say that the real problem is white supremacists in America,” Steyn said. “They are the real monsters. Not these nice hard working illegal immigrants. That may be well and true.”

He continued, “I mean, for the purposes of argument let’s say he is right, it’s irrelevant. The white supremacists are American citizens. The illegal immigrants are people who shouldn’t be here.”

That’s… a really crappy defense, Mark. What it boils down to is “The racists are American citizens. The DREAMers are not. No brainer as to who’s right here.”

I will, without hesitation, gladly trade all the white supremacists for the DREAMers who came here and worked their asses off to make a life here, despite the terrible circumstances that surrounded their early life. White supremacists are utter human garbage and not worthy of any defense here.

Steyn goes on to relay the utter horror of what’s happening in Arizona – it’s becoming more Hispanic.

The comparison of what’s happening in Arizona is in no way comparable to what’s happened in Europe and Sweden: Complete and unrestricted welcoming of people from a war-torn nation with no way of determining who is and isn’t a bad actor? Europe has brought a ton disaster upon itself. But, immigration and migration along the border – legal and illegal – are not destroying the country. They’re not even destroying Arizona.

Is exposure to another culture, or allowing another culture to influence yours inherently a bad thing? Absolutely not. It’s actually necessary in order to promote cultural growth and expansion. What stifles it is the utterly bigoted belief that outside influences on culture are bad and must be banned, which is the logical conclusion of Steyn’s words.

If this is what it means to be a “Thinker” in the modern Republican Party/conservative movement, then I guess you can count me out.

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This Is The Story Of The Greatest Dad In America

In America, the tension is so thick you could choke on it. Politics has gone from bad to worse and it just seems like it is invading every aspect of our lives. It is more obvious in media, social media, and even family gatherings than perhaps it ever was, and there is no sign that it’s going to let up.

We also see kids getting involved in the discussions at younger and younger ages, to the point where we are watching these child political “prodigies” – kids who have YouTube accounts and repeat familiar talking points in order to go viral – get appearances in some of our major media outlets.

While not new, even our homes are filled with more political discussion than ever, and it can pit parents versus children. Enter the Greatest Dad In America.

BuzzFeed has a feature up about a 17-year-old girl and her father. She – a Sanders supporter who volunteered for the Clinton campaign after Sanders was defeated – says she wants to be a politician. The father, a Trump supporter and way more down to earth guy, told her he would never vote for her.

At school, she’d already been involved in student leadership and women’s leadership organizations, the Democrats club, and the gay-straight alliance. Her interest in politics came as no surprise to her dad. But he laughed anyway. When she asked him why he was laughing, he told her, “I’d never thought I’d see the day where one of my kin ran for politics and I didn’t vote for them.” When she pressed him further, he added, “We don’t agree on anything. Why would I vote for you?”

Lily says it felt like a slap in the face. Mike did tell her he’d support her future campaign, and would even donate to it, but he was ultimately honest with her. He told her maybe he’d vote for her if she ran for mayor or city council — more municipal, less political roles — but not anything like governor or president.

This is a fantastic lesson for parents to learn: Mike is clearly conservative, but loves and respects his daughter and everything she is doing, even if he doesn’t agree with it. Yet, he is firm in letting her know that she can’t expect to get what she wants just because she is doing what she thinks is right. Bravo, Mike.

Lily, as a blossoming liberal activist, feels the beginnings of what she will later realize is the Sting Of Perpetual Outrage.

“I didn’t know what to do with that information. I just kind of sat there,” Lily recalls. “I don’t think I talked to him for a while after that.” Mike didn’t understand what he said wrong.

“After that I kind of realized it was a losing fight,” Lily says. Changing her dad’s mind “wasn’t something I should continue to pursue, because if he wouldn’t even vote for his own daughter, there’s no way I was gonna be able to convince him otherwise on anything.

Lily’s mistake here is assuming that it was her dad’s mind that needed to be changed and that she was a victim of his stubbornness. Alas, she appears to not realize that stubbornness is a genetic trait.

Here is BuzzFeed’s description of Mike:

Despite his hatred for Clinton, Mike doesn’t have a problem with a woman candidate, he tells Lily, though he did make a joke once to Lily about a potential female president making rash decisions on her period.

An aside: No one hasn’t at least thought that joke. If you say you haven’t, you’re lying.

He just has an intense distrust for politicians in general, a belief that all lobbyists should be dragged to the National Mall and “horsewhipped,” and a desire to see the country “get back together” in a time he says is more racially and politically divided than what he saw growing up during the ‘70s and ‘80s.

Great American male, that Mike. We need more like him. But what about Lily?

Lily has a short cropped haircut that looks homemade, at odds with her more composed, adult presentation: a peacoat with a pro–abortion rights “Trust Women” lapel pin she got at a pride parade, and a dark lipstick that doesn’t smudge while she sips her coffee. After a bad dye job last June, she told her grandmother she was considering cutting off all her hair, and her grandmother told her boys wouldn’t like that. The same night, Lily shaved her head.

We see Lily as a classic teenager: Whatever a grown-up says, she wants to do the opposite. While BuzzFeed is trying to portray her as the new generation of progressive leader, most of us with experience dealing with teenagers (or who remember ourselves being teenagers) realize that Lily is just a teenager. Maybe her drive to be a politician will take her somewhere, but probably not. She’ll end up being like the rest of us, shouting on Twitter.

Mike seems to be taking all of this in stride, realizing something very important:

“More power to her,” Mike says when I ask him about Lily’s plan to run for office someday. “Because whether she agrees with me or not, her time spent with me is going to rub off on her, is going to affect how she makes decisions in the future.”

Lily lives with Mike full-time (her parents are divorced, and until a few years ago, Lily split her time between her mother’s and father’s homes). He has a factory job, so they only spend a few hours a day together, according to the story, but those hours are still going to be formative. Time and actual, real-life experience will have some effect on Lily, whether she knows it yet or not.

America, we need more fathers like Mike. Let’s make that happen.

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Gee Willikers! Our Moral Fabric Torn Rips As President Trump Says A Swear

President Donald Trump speaks during a news conference with Norwegian Prime Minister Erna Solberg in the East Room of the White House, Wednesday, Jan. 10, 2018, in Washington. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Yesterday, the Washington Post ran a story on a leaked conversation President Trump had during a meeting on immigration. The contents of the conversation set the media ablaze as everyone read with shock and horror that the President of the United States referred to certain places as… well, it wasn’t nice.

Breathlessly, the media has covered this shiny and new scandal with all the fairness and objectivity you’ve come to expect. People actually said the swear word on the air. Jake Tapper had the decency to warn parents to mute the TV, which really only means everyone leans in and listens super close, before he said it. Headlines blared with the word uncensored. It appeared all over the place.

Once again, we are drawn into the miasma that is Words Of Donald Trump, and all other issues melt away as we focus entirely on the words that come out of the mouth of a man who has forgotten that some words need to stay inside his head sometimes. This is the most exhausting practice many of us have picked up since 2015, and it is a practice that we really should learn to let go of a bit more often.

I say that we, as humans who believe in right and wrong, don’t need to discuss that Donald Trump called them “****holes.” Instead, let’s focus on what makes them designatable as such.

What makes Haiti a place so bad that people frequently leave there for America? What about El Salvador? How about any African nation? Is it that America is the most desirable place to be? That’s part of it. The larger problem, however, is that there are many, many internal problems within many of these countries that make them incredibly difficult to live in.

Let’s take Haiti, for example.

This tiny island nation is led by corrupt bureaucrats who steal whatever aid money is given to the nation and grow fat off places like the U.S. while their own people starve. They are allowed to do so because the charity networks who raise money for Haitian causes tend to just bundle it and give it to the bureaucrats, and often in exchange for access to the nation for themselves. It will not shock you to discover that the Clinton Foundation is one such organization (oh, and Obama’s State Department gave preferential treatment to friends of the Clintons by helping them get their feet in the door in Haiti).

Or maybe El Salvador, where police are notoriously corrupt and government fat cats live large at the expense of its impoverished people. What about the other nations Trump talked about? Are they maybe paragons of good and proper government?

No. Each of these nations are filled with corrupt, leeching government officials who suckle at the teat of the American taxpayer with no oversight. So, if you want to be offended at the idea that these nations could be considered by someone a ****hole, then maybe you should also push for the American government to do more to make them less so.

One of the greatest annoyances I have at both the right and the left is their ability to ignore a major problem until it’s something they can raise campaign funds from.

Sure, we can grant some sort of passage to these people from other nations and give them a way to become citizens. But, that doesn’t stop the bleeding. The U.S. has the potential to help others in a meaningful way that doesn’t include giving money to another’s government with no stipulations. You can help these nations and staunch their bleeding while proving America has a heart and soul.

If you haven’t done something for Haiti, El Salvador, or any of those nations, however, then you are focused entirely on what the President said, and it’s your unhealthy obsession that will force our attention from what matter to what doesn’t matter.


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From Campaign Promise to Democrat Swap Meet: Trump’s Not At All Shocking Immigration Drift

Try not to be this shocked at the flip.

In Louisiana, like in much of the American South, there exists a breed of Democrat that saw the writing on the wall and switched their affiliation to “Republican” in order to keep their seats. While some of these Democrats did have Republican tendencies on certain issues, they were still Democrats, and sometimes their blue shows.

Because of this affliction in Louisiana, having observed our legislature for years, I typically react to any Republican who used to be a Democrat with a healthy dose of skepticism and distrust. Hence, my frequent critiques of President Donald Trump.

So, color me unsurprised when he holds a summit with Democrats on immigration and comes across as far more liberal on the issue than his frothing fan base would like to believe. In fact, those teeming domestic masses are none too pleased with the President, and their best spin in trying to make this seem like a win is apparently that he spoke like an adult and in complete sentences.

They do not like the content of the meeting, however. He’s trading, swapping one policy for another. His supporters expected and voted for a hostile takeover. Instead they get a swap meet, trading away their immigration hard line for a wall instead of going for both.

Still, this should not come as a shock. Trump has frequently said he is willing to work with Democrats, and has met multiple times with Nancy Pelosi and Chuck Schumer. He compliments both of them more than he compliments practically any Republican in the House or Senate. And despite the “man with a plan” rhetoric from both the campaign trail and his ongoing hype rallies around the nation, it’s clear it was always his intent to go soft on policies like DACA and the wall.

In fact, it was obvious he would become more liberal on the subject because he always was liberal on the subject. Many straight-up Democratic beliefs (citizenship for immigrants, stricter gun control, right to abort a child) were ones he openly espoused prior to deciding he wanted to run for President (and even inadvertently from time to time since.) A man solely obsessed with his brand, he adjusted it to meet the needs of the people he believed he needed in order to get elected.

In a meeting with liberal Democrats, he listens to what they want and agrees with much of it. Not that some of the things they want are necessarily bad – broken clocks and all that – but it’s his base he is betraying every time he agrees with the Democrats.

It’s not like they weren’t warned, either. Here at RedState and elsewhere, voters were told to lower their expectations. There’s no way he’s going to even pursue many of the things he talked about. He’s out there saying all the right things and stirring up all the right folks in order to generate excitement. But, each and every time we said something to that effect, we were pronounced liberals and ignored.

You should not be surprised that Trump is poised to walk back some campaign promises. Sure, he told the press yesterday that he would not accept anything that didn’t include funding for the wall, but that was only after the backlash online (which we know his people pay attention to – and I suspect he does too) that he re-iterated that point.

Besides, whatever spin they put out about him holding the line on the wall, he was supposed to build the wall, make Mexico pay for it, and maintain a hard line on all other immigration policy. He was supposed to do all of it. His supporters were bragging that he would right up until he changed the song.

It’s a big part of the dealmakers playbook. He moves the goalposts and then claims victory.

Don’t be played for a fool. Yes, the administration has had a good year, policy-wise, and certainly a better one than some of us predicted or expected. Not perfect (cough GOP healthcare plan cough), but better than expected. Judges appointed, per deals cut during the primary and outside assistance from think tanks, and the GOP tax bill that could easily be called the Ryan plan. A better year than it looked like we would have.

But don’t get too comfy. Don’t allow yourself think for a moment that those successes mean he’ll be a perfect President. And the reason it’s important for us to say that, and to keep reminding each other, is because we did have a good first year. Just imagine how much worse it would be without the GOP critics out here never letting him slide.

He’s going to let you down, probably through negotiation with the Democrats. How badly depends on how willing you are to let him get away with it.

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REVIEW: Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury” Is Equal Parts Unnecessary and Redundant

When the Twilight series first came out, I was struck by just how much unnecessary language was in each book. If you took all of the unnecessary adjectives and adverbs out of the series, it is maybe a book and a half long, which is much more suited to the bare-bones plot the series presents us with.

While reading Michael Wolff’s alleged tell-all of the Trump Administration’s first year, I am forced to think back to the Twilight series, because I find myself with similar thoughts… well, that and, like Twilight, Wolff’s readers invariably find themselves rooting for Trump to end up with one of his great loves over the other. Are you Team Bannon or Team Trump?

I won’t spoil for you which one he ends up with.

The premise of Wolff’s book is innocent enough. Wolff himself claims to be non-political (and, to a point, he remains such in the book), and he just wants to chronicle the almost Borgia-like Trump administration as it navigates its way through its first year in power. There are a couple of key problems with the writing, however, that make it unbearable.

The first problem is the narration. Wolff attempts to cram too many anecdotes into the history of each of the key players (you can tell who the key players are, as they are the chapter titles through most of the book). He jumps into these mini-narratives in the middle of the much longer stories about the key issues the administration faced. As a result, you lose track of where you are supposed to be in the Trump Administration’s first year multiple times per chapter.

It is one thing to tell these background stories of each character – and yes, everyone involved in the Trump Administration to this point is as much a character as they are an actual, real human being. But, it is another thing entirely to drop these stories into an important moment in history and completely screw up the readers’ ability to determine what happened when.

This is all part of the larger problem, which is how poorly edited the book seems to be. In an effort to rush the book out in time for the one-year anniversary of Trump’s official ascendency, the writer and the publisher seem to have skipped the major step of actually editing the book.

I bought the Kindle edition (I wasn’t paying the full $30 for this book, and neither should you), and I first thought maybe it was something up with the digital version, but a search of Twitter seems to indicate that the book wasn’t properly edited at all. Any impact some of these tidbits Wolff uses had were destroyed when I read the always hilarious typo of “pubic” where “public” should have been.

The worst crime of the book, however, is the crime of redundancy. The book offers little that wasn’t already speculated or known about the players within. It was long believed that Trump and Melania didn’t want to win, that Trump was using this for branding purposes, that they and everyone else were shocked and appalled they won.

It doesn’t get much better from there. A lot of the stories appear to be new (though, I suspect, heavily embellished),  but the mentality of the people involved is certainly expected from the information we got from news reports in real time.

I don’t recommend the book. It was perhaps ill-advised for me to buy it in the first place, but I did it for you. Don’t make the same mistakes I did. If you find yourself at Barnes & Noble, running a finger down the spine of the book, about to pick it up, just walk away. Nothing good comes from it.

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This Story Proves We Should All Strive To Be John Kelly

If every American aspired to be John Kelly, only then would we Make America Great Again.

The saying goes that having to do something difficult is like herding cats. Cats are independent-minded creatures that just don’t give a damn about you or your plans for them. They will do absolutely nothing outside of their realm of interests no matter how hard you plead, beg, etc.

There is one reason, and one reason only, that the comparison between a difficult, often impossible, and incredibly aggravating task and herding cats exist: Because up until now, no one had to deal with being Donald Trump’s Chief of Staff.

Enter General John Kelly, the most resolute man in America.

He has the task of trying to herd Donald Trump in one direction or another while simultaneously herding people to or away from Trump, a man with the apparent attention span of a goldfish. If that is not more aggravating and tiresome than herding cats, I don’t know what is.

Today, Donald Trump went on a morning tweetstorm that was, contrary to its intent, not smart. Kelly, whose job is to keep Trump on track, apparently does not read Trump’s tweets (as an aside, I wish to one day be as smart and wise as John Kelly). Here’s what happened when confronted with those tweets.

Ok.” That is his only response. If you were to test noted hardass X-man Wolverine’s adamantium claws against Kelly’s psyche, Wolverine would say “Nope,” and walk away. Batman, the most powerful non-superpowered human in comic book history, a man with the mental fortitude to create a backup consciousness in case his brain was attacked, cannot stand up to Kelly’s fortitude.

We should all strive to take things in the stride that Kelly does in his line of work – the most challenging line of work there is. Lesser men would have ruptured an aneurysm by now. But Kelly? Kelly stands tall.

If your New Year’s Resolution wasn’t “I want to be John Kelly,” then you are doing New Year’s Resolutions wrong.

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Here’s The Apology Steve Bannon Was Going To Make Before Trump Blasted Him

The Righteous Brothers make this picture so much better.

With the revelations in Michael Wolff’s book that Steve Bannon seemed to have a low opinion of his former meal ticket’s ability to understand what was going on, Bannon became a target of both the Trump Administration and a large swath of the conservative base that Bannon used to get Trump elected in the first place.

In an effort to get back in the good graces of the President, Bannon had prepared a statement regarding the book and, specifically, addressing comments he appears to have made about Don Jr. and his meeting with the Russians.

However, before Bannon could get that statement out, Trump himself took to Twitter and disavowed Bannon, later giving him the “low-level staffer” treatment he’s afforded others who have fallen from grace.

The Daily Beast has apparently gotten ahold of Bannon’s statement, summarizing one part and quoting another in this piece about Bannon and Trump’s relationship gone awry.

The Daily Beast has obtained portions of the final draft of Bannon’s unreleased statement.

In them, the Breitbart chairman noted that he has previously and repeatedly called the Trump-Russia investigation baseless and a “witch hunt by the left.” (The term “witch hunt” is one of the president’s preferred ways of describing the ongoing Russia probes.)

Bannon then went on to praise the president and his son.

“Don Jr., like his father, is a great American and a patriot. And we all know Don Jr. did not knowingly meet with Russian agents,” the next paragraph of Bannon’s unreleased statement read.


The text of Bannon’s written statement that was obtained by The Daily Beast does not mention Kushner, a top White House adviser and President Trump’s son-in-law who Bannon had feuded with in the West Wing and whom Bannon repeatedly disparages to Wolff.

The information we have to go on indicates that Bannon has learned the age-old lesson regarding political power: No one sits higher than the king.

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