White House Chief Strategist Steve Bannon was formerly Chairman of Breitbart, the far right Conservative website notorious for its racist and sexist content that pairs so comfortably with Trump. For some time there has been an unspoken alliance between Breitbart and members of the “old” Republican party who had aligned themselves with the “new” Republicans, such was the case when Chief of Staff Reince Priebus, Press Secretary Sean Spicer, and Speaker Paul Ryan who found themselves unscathed in Breitbart stories.
The alliance between extreme Conservatives at Breitbart and “normal” Republicans that we were used to before Trump is now over, Business Insider reports:
But that appeared to change on Tuesday, when Breitbart savaged House Speaker Paul Ryan’s proposal, which Trump supports, to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, better known as Obamacare. The website deemed it “Obamacare 2.0” and told its readers the legislation “gives illegal aliens healthcare through identity fraud” and amounted to “GOP welfare entitlement.”
An additional story by Matthew Boyle, the website’s Washington editor, went after Spicer for “inaccurately” saying the bill “fully repeals Obamacare.”
“We are Breitbart,” Boyle wrote in a Slack conversation about his story, according to a screenshot obtained by Business Insider. “This is war.”
Boyle added: “There are no sacred cows in war.”
It all started when Breitbart attacked Chief of Staff Priebus. Assumptions were made that Bannon had directed his colleagues at Breitbart to write the Priebus hit piece but apparently he did not. Supposedly, Bannon then contacted Breitbart Editor Matthew Boyle and instructed him not to write anymore attack pieces on members of the “old” GOP. Boyle, however, did not oblige and encouraged more hit pieces that would further aggravate Bannon.
Now, it appears there is a media “war” going on inside the far right, with hardline Conservatives resisting Trump’s policies they deem are not Conservative enough.
Bannon further aggravated Boyle that week when he instructed him not to publish additional articles critical of Priebus, prompting the Washington editor to tell others that Bannon had betrayed Breitbart and was guilty of “treason,” according to a source.
When tension between the two reached a fever pitch, senior White House officials aimed to placate Boyle by offering him access to key staffers, two sources said.
But the honeymoon phase appeared to end on Tuesday, with Breitbart largely seeking to place responsibility for the repeal-and-replace legislation on establishment GOP figures, despite Trump’s support.
It is unlikely stories like this will go away anytime soon. Trump’s base is extremely organized and extremely eager to see a Conservative-nationalist agenda acted upon.
Are you surprised that Conservatives are trying to push Trump further to the right? Comment below and let us know.