Former Trump deputy campaign manager Dave Bossie faced a barrage of questions Sunday about the past and present Trump White House with top political strategist Steve Bannon gone — answering many of them by warning that Bannon will now go after leaders of the GOP-led Congress.
“He’s going to be an important voice for the president as it relates to leaning into Congress, specifically in trying to get the failures of leadership in the House and Senate to … really take hold of the president’s agenda,” Bossie told “Fox News Sunday.”
Bannon left the White House on Friday and immediately returned to Breitbart News, the far-right media organization whose coverage of Trump’s 2016 presidential campaign is considered a major factor in his improbable victory.
Bossie’s comments follow news reports that Bannon, who joined the Trump campaign in the closing months, is frustrated with Congress and now intends to turn up the heat on House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.
Bannon reportedly suggested to Trump that he veto any congressional spending resolution — which must be passed in the next few weeks to avoid a government shutdown — that fails to include money for the president’s U.S.-Mexico border wall.
“The House and Senate leadership has not bought into the president’s full agenda,” Bossie said. “And I think the record of the last seven months bears that out. … There’s a lack of leadership on the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue.”
Bossie declined to speculate about who within the White House orchestrated Bannon’s ouster, arguing such staff changes occur in every presidency.
However, he said Bannon offered his resignation to allow new White House Chief of Staff Gen. John Kelly to start with a “clean slate” — amid reports that Bannon was a divisive West Wing staffer whose agenda clashed with those of advisers Ivanka Trump, the president’s daughter, and her husband, Jared Kushner.
“I do believe that Steve Bannon is going to be a very loyal soldier to the president as it relates to his agenda from the outside,” Bossie said.
He also downplayed the idea that Bannon was the genius behind Trump’s victory and argued the president’s agenda remains unchanged, including his push to sign into law legislation on comprehensive tax reform.
“This president understands how he got elected,” Bossie said. “He is the one who formulated, really, the agenda and the issues that we really ran on. … We helped the president, it was the president’s ideas and this has always been the president’s agenda. … The president is fully committed to draining the swamp. He is in the throes of that fight right now.”