By Brandon Moseley
Alabama Political Reporter
In a new book, former Trump Chief Strategist Steve Bannon describes Donald Trump Jr., Jared Kushner and Paul Manafort’s infamous Trump Tower meeting with Russians during the 2016 campaign as “unpatriotic” and “treasonous.”
In the new book by Michael Wolff called “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” Bannon denounces a June 2016 meeting between Trump’s son, Donald Jr., White House Adviser Kushner, then campaign Chairman Paul Manafort and Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya at Trump Tower in New York. The Trump team had been promised documents that would “incriminate” former Secretary of State and then-Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton.
Bannon reportedly told Wolf, “Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad shit, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately.”
Bannon said that even if any such meeting had to take place, it should have been set up “in a Holiday Inn in Manchester, New Hampshire, with your lawyers who meet with these people.”
Bannon added: “You never see it, you never know it, because you don’t need to … But that’s the brain trust that they had.”
Former state Rep. Perry Hooper, who hosted visits by Donald Trump Jr. to Alabama, responded to the Bannon book in a statement.
“I find the allegations in Steve Wolf’s upcoming book outrageous,” Hooper said. “Donald Trump Jr. is an outstanding businessman, a devoted husband and father, and a true patriot. As President Trump stated Steve Bannon. who is often quoted in this book, has not only lost his job, he has lost his mind. I do not believe there is a scintilla of truth in the allegations in this book “Fire and Fury.” The book has but one objective; to divert attention away from the tremendous tax reform bill President Trump just signed into law, the many accomplishments of the first year of the Trump administration and the continuing implementation of the Trump agenda. The American people will not be fooled by these unfounded allegations against the Trump Administration and the President’s son.”
The president responded in a statement: “Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party.”
“Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn’t as easy as I make it look,” Trump said. “Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans. Steve doesn’t represent my base—he’s only in it for himself.”
“Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was,” Trump continued. “It is the only thing he does well. Steve was rarely in a one-on-one meeting with me and only pretends to have had influence to fool a few people with no access and no clue, whom he helped write phony books.”
“We have many great Republican members of Congress and candidates who are very supportive of the Make America Great Again agenda,” the president added. “Like me, they love the United States of America and are helping to finally take our country back and build it up, rather than simply seeking to burn it all down.”
After leaving the president’s service, Bannon came to Alabama and endorsed Roy Moore over Establishment favorite, the appointed Sen. Luther Strange. Moore defeated Strange; but Moore’s ties to Bannon and his threatened war on Republican Establishment incumbents and candidates contributed to Moore’s campaign being largely abandoned by national Republicans in the special election. Moore narrowly lost the election to Clinton-era U.S. Attorney Doug Jones on Dec. 12.
Manafort was fired as campaign manager by Trump prior to his hiring of Bannon. Manafort is under federal indictment for activities associated with the Ukrainian government under Viktor Yanukovych.
(Original reporting by the Breitbart News and New York Times contributed to this report.)