Trump strategist Steve Bannon hails Satan, Darth Vader and Dick Cheney in new interview

Source: Getty Images
Source: Getty Images

President-elect Donald Trump's new chief counselor, Steve Bannon, has some interesting role models. 

"Darkness is good," Bannon said in an exclusive sitdown with the Hollywood Reporter. "Dick Cheney. Darth Vader. Satan. That's power."

Author Michael Wolff interviewed Bannon for a profile of the Breitbart News mastermind, who joined Trump's team over the summer: 

Bannon's appointment as one of the most powerful men in the president-elect's circle has sparked a mass outcry, with demands from Congressional delegations and the Twitterverse alike that he be ousted as a purveyor of hate.

The alt-right, however, is thrilled about Bannon's ascendance, trusting that he would hold the ever-unpredictable Trump to his word about building a border wall and ejecting undocumented immigrants from the country.

Bannon, who will reportedly have to break ties with his Trump-pushing Breitbart because of White House ethics rules, flatly denied that he is a bigot in his sit-down with THR.

"I'm not a white nationalist, I'm a nationalist. I'm an economic nationalist," he said in the interview. "The globalists gutted the American working class and created a middle class in Asia. The issue now is about Americans looking to not get f*cked over."

Steve Bannon says he's no white nationalist.
Source: 
MANDEL NGAN/Getty Images

Bannon, who's been excoriated for peddling anti-Semitism and misogyny and has been defended by Team Trump, set out a sweeping vision for America's future — and himself:

"Like [Andrew] Jackson's populism, we're going to build an entirely new political movement ... It's everything related to jobs. The conservatives are going to go crazy. I'm the guy pushing a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan. With negative interest rates throughout the world, it's the greatest opportunity to rebuild everything. Ship yards, iron works, get them all jacked up. We're just going to throw it up against the wall and see if it sticks. It will be as exciting as the 1930s, greater than the Reagan revolution — conservatives, plus populists, in an economic nationalist movement."

At one point, he called himself "Thomas Cromwell in the court of the Tudors" and lauded Trump as "probably the greatest orator since William Jennings Bryan."

He also trashed the "media bubble" as the linchpin of Democrat Hillary Clinton's stunning loss to Trump on Election Day.

"It's a closed circle of information from which Hillary Clinton got all her information — and her confidence. That was our opening."

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Celeste Katz

Celeste Katz is senior political correspondent at Mic, covering national politics. She is based in New York and can be reached at celeste@mic.com.

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