WASHINGTON, D.C. — White House Press Secretary Sarah Sanders issued a statement on Friday confirming that White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon is leaving his position in the White House.
The statement sent to reporters read simply:
White House Chief of Staff John Kelly and Steve Bannon have mutually agreed today would be Steve’s last day. We are grateful for his service and wish him the best.
Shortly before confirmation of Bannon’s departure, 20 grassroots conservative leaders issued a letter praising President Donald Trump while emphasizing that they took comfort that Steve Bannon and Kellyanne Conway were assisting Trump in weathering “unfair attacks” and keeping President Trump’s agenda “front and center.” The leaders wrote, “While others may come and go in the White House, we feel sure that with Steve and Kellyanne at your side, you will always hear the voices of those of us who have supported you through thick and thin, despite the efforts by some to ‘manage’ you and your message.”
The New York Times reported, “As of Friday morning, the two men were still discussing Mr. Bannon’s future, the officials said. A person close to Mr. Bannon insisted the parting of ways was his idea, and that he had submitted his resignation to the president on Aug. 7, to be announced at the start of this week, but it was delayed in the wake of the racial unrest in Charlottesville, Va.”
Follow Michelle Moons on Twitter @MichelleDiana