Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon joined FNC’s Maria Bartiromo on “Sunday Morning Futures” to discuss the current state of the Trump administration:
Bloomberg’s campaign responding to the news, saying this: “We are focused on the primary and the debate, not vice president speculation.”
Joining me right now, former White House chief strategist and the “War Room” host, Steve Bannon, the man who called this back in August on this program.
Steve, it’s great to have you here.
STEVE BANNON, FORMER WHITE HOUSE CHIEF STRATEGIST: Thanks for having me, Maria.
BARTIROMO: Thank you so much for joining us.
So, you knew Hillary Clinton was going to come into this race. You said it, and nobody — everybody was thinking, what? Are you kidding me? But you were right, if this is true. Assess the situation, the combination of Bloomberg and Clinton.
BANNON: Look, Matt Drudge put his name on this yesterday.
This was original reporting from Matt Drudge. If Drudge puts his name on something, and there hasn’t been denials, it’s money good. I’m not saying it’s going to happen. And Matt Drudge is not saying it’s happening, but there are clearly discussions going on.
You really haven’t had a denial from the Bloomberg camp. And you certainly haven’t had a denial from the Hillary Clinton camp. And I think this goes back to the heart of why the Democratic Party has lost its way. The Democratic Party does not understand today, eight months from Election Day, why they lost 2016.
They don’t understand about managed decline of our elites. They don’t understand why Donald Trump won. They don’t understand the message of Donald Trump.
They have spent three years trying to destroy him. They have failed to destroy him. Eight months from the election, they have nothing. So now they have a moderate Republican mayor oligarch of New York combining with a globalist multi-time failure presidential candidate to try to do a combination.
And I think that this shows you the desperation of the Democratic Party and really the personal vendetta that the Clintons and Michael Bloomberg have against President Trump.
This is not about taking the country forward. This is not about taking the country to the next level. This is not about helping working-class people. This is a personal vendetta.
And Democrats — and I come from a family of Democrats. The Democratic Party should be ashamed of itself that it’s in this situation.
BARTIROMO: Well, you say oligarchs.
And I thought it was really interesting. Yesterday, when that news first broke that he’s considering choosing Hillary Clinton, a lot of people questioned, well, wait a second. You’re not — you’re not supposed to have two candidates from the same state. They’re both from New York.
So that was very quickly changed by Michael Bloomberg apparently saying, well, that’s OK. I have got a home in Colorado and I have got a home in Florida. I will change my address to say that I’m from Florida.
Can he do that, just say…
BANNON: Yes, well, this is what oligarchs do.
Remember, on Tuesday night, March 3, in a couple of weeks, at midnight, when the California polls close out — out West, the Democratic Party will have an independent socialist and a moderate or liberal mayor, Republican mayor of New York, as the two top guys running for the primary.
There won’t really be any Democrats around. This is why Hillary Clinton — and I believe that Bill Clinton’s fingerprints are all over this.
I think you can see Bill Clinton trying to get Hillary back in the game. And I said back in August and I have said over — for years since — remember, Trump wouldn’t be impeached if Michael Bloomberg hadn’t put the $100 million up for the dirty 30 for the — for those House seats, that it just shows you that they have been thinking this through, and that there was always going to be a reaction to Bloomberg buying the Democratic Party.
He’s doing a leveraged buyout of the Democratic Party. And the people — and there’s going to be a counter-reaction. He’s trying to — he’s trying to get in front of that by co-opting the Clintons now and working with the Clintons.
The Bernie people, the Bernie movement have to understand now they’re detested and despised, as the deplorables are in the Trump movement. And I think this is a wakeup call for all of Bernie’s people to say, hey, we are detested by Bloomberg. We’re detested by the Clintons.
Here we are, the front-runner. They don’t give us any respect. The liberal media doesn’t give us any respect. I think the Bernie people now have to start to look for Donald Trump as their voice.
BARTIROMO: Well, look at this. He’s in the lead. Bernie is. They don’t want him in the lead.
The Hillary Clinton camp keeps trashing him. Hillary herself said nobody likes him. Why do you think Bill Clinton’s fingerprints are all over this? Talk to us about that a bit. What do you…
BANNON: First off, I think Bill Clinton, back from ’16, Bill Clinton was one that said the hipsters in Brooklyn do not understand what Donald Trump’s doing.
Donald Trump’s going into Michigan. Donald Trump’s going to Wisconsin. He’s going to Pennsylvania. He’s talking about returning America to its greatness built upon the shoulders of the working class and middle class.
Clinton, who’s a master politician, saw that Donald Trump was resonating with working-class Democrats and would win those states.
BANNON: The hipsters in Brooklyn — this is why Hillary Clinton would never won.
The hipsters in Brooklyn thought they had a better plan. They thought they could microtarget this thing. And that’s why Clinton has been seething, just like Hillary has, from that time.
But here’s the important point. They haven’t learned the lessons of Trump. All they have done for three years is tried to destroy President Trump. They haven’t tried to work with him to take the country forward. They haven’t tried to work with him on trade. They haven’t tried to work with him on bringing jobs back to America.
BANNON: They haven’t tried to work with him on the wall.
BARTIROMO: … to impeach him again.
I just was — look, I’m not questioning your thinking, because you have been so spot on throughout all of this. But I’m just wondering, is this story…
BANNON: We were pretty mocked when we said Bloomberg and Clinton.
BARTIROMO: Incredible. You were spot on.
But it — but this is also coming a day after a Washington Post story about Michael Bloomberg. And the Post story said this: “Mike Bloomberg for years has battled women’s allegations of profane sexist comments” — from The Washington Post.
I actually had dinner with a woman from Bloomberg the other night, and she said to me, Maria, it’s horrible. I can’t even get a step forward, they’re so misogynistic.
I didn’t realize it was that bad. But this article is bad for Michael Bloomberg. Are you sure this whole trial balloon of Hillary Clinton is just not to distract from this article?
BANNON: The timing of this is definitely to take off both The Washington Post and The New York Times.
Here’s the thing about the Bloomberg thing, I think, is so shocking. And, once again, it’s going to test the core principles of the Democratic Party, of whether they’re going to have an oligarch come in and buy it.
They’re supposed to be about the MeToo movement and Time’s Up movement. And here’s what you have. Different than President Trump’s kind of offhand remarks, the locker room talk of President Trump, which triggered them and they went nuts…
BANNON: … the problem with these — Bloomberg’s, it’s premeditated and it’s cruel.
What he said to these women about aborting their children, what he said to women about their looks…
BARTIROMO: Oh, my God.
BANNON: … what he said to — what he said to these women about the African-American nannies, this was cruel, it was premeditated, and it’s over years and years and years.
This is not offhand comments and locker room talk. And that’s why you’re going to have a gut check with the Democratic Party to see, if somebody like this, that has had a history of this, can come in as an oligarch and buy the Democratic Party.
And the Bernie people ought to be outraged about this. It shows you that the Democratic apparatus and establishment has no respect for you.
BARTIROMO: So he’s willing to spend up to $2 billion to take out Donald Trump. As you know, he has said that. He doesn’t want any billionaires, though, by the way, in America anyway.
How much of a threat is Clinton, Bloomberg together against Donald Trump?
BANNON: Listen, any time you are going to put — he said $2 billion if he’s not the nominee.
BANNON: He will have unlimited amount of money to do this.
He has a personal vendetta against the president. So does Hillary Clinton.
As long as they don’t get to the thesis of why Donald Trump won, which is return to greatness, and focus in on working-class people and middle-class issues, Donald Trump’s going to win.
But I got to tell you, this is teeing up to be the nastiest, most brutal campaign in American history. People say it’s the most important election. I don’t know if it’s the most important election, but I can tell you, it’s going to be the nastiest and most brutal.
And I think the Trump campaign, which I think they’re doing a great job right now, you have to go no — no-huddle offense. Every day is like your last day. You have to play hard. Trump — President Trump is going to win and should win.
But I got to tell you, Bloomberg’s money, the Clinton apparatus, and the mainstream media selling out, remember…
BANNON: … if the mainstream media had done their jobs — for the last year-and-a-half, we have been told Biden, Warren, Biden, Warren, Biden, Warren. They’re nonevents.
They’re not prepared to take on Trump. They try to destroy him. They try to prop up other people that could take him on. The Democratic Party sold out to an oligarch. And this is going to be a nasty, brutal campaign.
BARTIROMO: And you said, this is an incredible New York story. I mean, Clinton, Trump, Bloomberg from New York, it’s unbelievable.
Real quick, you — we got to jump, but in terms of this coronavirus, now The New York Times reporting that Xi Jinping was on it early. I mean, they still went to the White House, as I have been saying, and shook everybody’s hand.
BANNON: He knew it. Like you have been saying, it’s a week beforehand.
And, also, Foxconn has announced, I think, they’re not opening the factories tomorrow. On March 3, I think you’re going to see a conversion of an oligarch and a virus. This virus is very important.
The president’s taken great action so far. But I think people got to start focusing on the impact to the economy. The Chinese economy, I think, is imploding.