The Current

Meet Trump's chief strategist Stephen Bannon, the man behind alt-right Breitbart News

Now that Trump's chief strategist Stephen Bannon has been appointed, critics are concerned the alt-right media mogul behind Breitbart News will promote populist ideals in the White House. Journalist Josh Green gives us a profile on Bannon.
Critics worry about alt-right's influence in White House after Trump taps Stephen Bannon as chief strategist. (Carlo Allegri/Reuters)

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U.S. president-elect Donald Trump has named Stephen Bannon as his chief strategist.

The appointment is controversial due to Bannon's management of Breitbart News, an extreme right-wing website accused of propagating white supremacist, anti-semitic and misogynistic views.

Bloomberg Businessweek senior national correspondent Josh Green tells The Current's Anna Maria Tremonti why he characterizes Bannon as "the most dangerous political operative in America."

"Bannon in Breitbart News for the last three or four years [has] been kind of a hidden force in U.S. politics," says Green, pointing to Bannon's role in tearing down the GOP establishment in Washington. 

Bannon's Breitbart coverage was one of the primary reasons former House Speaker John Boehner left his position, Green tells Tremonti. 
In Trump's White House, alt-right media mogul Stephen Bannon will promote populist ideals, says journalist Josh Green. ( Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

According to Green, Bannon has been essential in an alt-right campaign against the Democratic nominee.

"He also was the architect of a long-range plan to bring down Hillary Clinton."

"So he is really a guy who is at the centre of what Clinton once referred to as the vast right-wing conspiracy and now he's been elevated to a key job in the Trump White House," says Green.

The appointment has outraged civil rights groups as well as Democrats and some Republicans. Many critics worry about the consequences of an extreme alt-right influence so close to the presidency.

"I think the thing that upsets so many people about Bannon is that ... he is chairman of Breitbart News and as an outlet it is deliberately provocative."

"It runs articles and headlines that aim to offend and upset people. And [has] used that vehicle to kind of channel grassroots anger at the government and the culture," says Green.

"I think that's one reason why our politics here in the U.S. has gotten so intensely ugly about five or six years."

Listen to the full conversation.

This segment was produced by The Current's Idella Sturino.