Skip To Content
JEWISH. INDEPENDENT. NONPROFIT.
Fast Forward

Steve Bannon Steps Down From Breitbart After Comments Critical Of Trump

WASHINGTON (JTA) — Steve Bannon, the former top strategic adviser to President Trump, is leaving his powerful perch at Breitbart News.

Breitbart News in a statement said Bannon is a “valued part of our legacy,” but various media, including The New York Times, said he was ousted because of a falling-out with Trump over quotes he gave to the author of an incendiary book about the Trump White House.

The book, “Fire and Fury,” by journalist Michael Wolff, quoted Bannon at length attacking Trump’s family, with special rancor aimed at Trump’s daughter Ivanka and son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

Bannon, calling himself an “economic nationalist,” helmed Breitbart after the sudden death of its founder, Andrew Breitbart, in 2012, and again after he left the White House in August. Under his watch, Breitbart News was seen as strongly pro-Israel, with a dedicated Jerusalem bureau. Bannon was also said to have urged Trump to move the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem and to refuse to meet with Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. Breitbart’s Jewish employees said he made sure they were able to observe Shabbat and Jewish holidays.

Yet he was also portrayed by Jewish liberals as inimical to Jewish interests. Joining Trump’s presidential campaign in its last three months, he introduced terms like “globalists” and theories of international banking conspiracies that often recalled anti-Semitic propaganda, although neither Bannon nor Trump explicitly named a Jewish conspiracy.

Bannon called Breitbart a “platform” for the “alt-right,” a loosely organized nationalistic movement whose followers include white supremacists and anti-Semites, but he also told reporters that he rejected both and was confident they would “wash out” of the movement.

He battled with Kushner and Ivanka Trump at the White House, calling Kushner, who is Jewish, a “globalist.”

The president was enraged again when passages from Wolff’s book were released, saying that Bannon had “lost his mind.”

According to The Times, influential conservative political donor Rebekah Mercer, who has a minority stake in Breitbart, led the effort to push out Bannon.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning, nonprofit journalism during this critical time.

Now more than ever, American Jews need independent news they can trust, with reporting driven by truth, not ideology. We serve you, not any ideological agenda.

At a time when other newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall and invested additional resources to report on the ground from Israel and around the U.S. on the impact of the war, rising antisemitism and the protests on college campuses.

Readers like you make it all possible. Support our work by becoming a Forward Member and connect with our journalism and your community.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.