Former White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon emphasized in a 60 Minutes interview that President Donald Trump’s message of economic nationalism is so powerful because it will ultimately unite Americans of all races and backgrounds.
“Economic nationalism is what this country was built on. The American system—we look after our own. We look after our citizen, we look after our manufacturing base,” Bannon told CBS anchor Charlie Rose. “And guess what? This country’s going to be greater, more united, more powerful than it’s ever been. This is not astrophysics. And by the way, that’s every nationality, every race, every religion, every sexual preference.”
Bannon pointed out that “as long as you’re an American citizen, you’re part of this populous economic nationalist movement.”
Bannon said his belief in how much economic nationalism can unite Americans of all races and backgrounds was why he told President Donald Trump that he thought he was going to win the election after the Access Hollywood tape was released. Some of Trump’s advisers thought he had no chance and even urged Trump to drop out of the race. The Breitbart News executive chairman, though, said he told Trump he had a “100%” chance to win the election if he just doubled down on the economic nationalist message.
“That’s why I told him, ‘Double down,’ every time [on the economic nationalism message],’ Bannon recalled. “And on that day that’s the first time and only time he ever got upset with me. He goes, ‘Come on, it’s not 100%.” I go, ‘It’s absolutely 100%.’ And I told him why. They don’t care [about locker-room talk].”
In the end, Bannon was right, as Trump shocked the world and the political elites on election night, as his economic nationalism message galvanized Americans who had not voted in presidential elections because they just got sick and tired of voting for candidates who only appealed to the 3.8%.
Bannon told Rose that the “American system” of “protection of our manufacturing, financial system that lends to manufacturers … and the control of our borders” has always been built “on our citizens.”
“I think what we have to do is focus on the American citizens,” Bannon said. “I think we have to focus on American citizens.”