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Who Is Steve Bannon?

Who Is Steve Bannon?

(AP)

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Thursday, 18 August 2016 07:56 AM Current | Bio | Archive

In turning to Steve Bannon to head up his flailing campaign, Donald Trump on Wednesday made what observers on all sides agree is one of the most unusual choices for a campaign chief executive in political history.

Bannon, the crusading executive chairman of Breitbart News, is a well-known “mover and shaker” in the modern conservative movement. As the national press noted after his appointment was announced, he has never run a campaign for anything. But he has, as admirers pointed have out, successfully taken on a lot of diverse occupations, including U.S. naval officer, investment banker with Goldman Sachs, and Hollywood filmmaker.

After a few years at Goldman Sachs, Bannon, in 1990, launched his own boutique investment bank, Bannon and Company. Eight years later, after his company was bought out by Societe Generale, Bannon became an executive producer of movies that ranged from the Oscar-nominated “Titus,” starring Anthony Hopkins, to the Cold War documentary “In the Face of Evil.”

He met Andrew Breitbart when Breitbart, also a resident of Southern California, was launching his eponymous news website in the early 2000s. The two joined forces, and Bannon provided office space as well as investors.

In 2012, following Breitbart’s sudden death from heart failure at age 43, Bannon took over as executive chairman of the website and oversaw its relaunch. Today, Breitbart News draws an estimated 21 million unique visitors per month. The website was a pivotal force in generating animosity on the right toward House Speaker John Boehner, eventually driving him from office.

Bannon also launched the Government Accountability Institute, which last year made major news after its president, Peter Schweizer, wrote “Clinton Cash: The Untold Story of How and Why Foreign Governments and Businesses Helped Make Bill and Hillary Rich,” published by HarperCollins.

“The book dominated the political landscape for weeks and probably did more to shape public perception of Hillary Clinton than any of the barbs from her Republican detractors,” wrote Joshua Green in Bloomberg Business Week.

Steve Bannon has succeeded in a lot of diverse ventures. As to whether that success will translate into the election of Donald Trump as president could be one of the biggest stories of 2016.

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax.


 

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In turning to Steve Bannon to head up his flailing campaign, Donald Trump on Wednesday made what observers on all sides agree is one of the most unusual choices for a campaign manager in political history.
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Thursday, 18 August 2016 07:56 AM
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