Steve Bannon: ‘Access Hollywood’ Moment Showed Who Was Loyal to Trump

Steve Bannon 60 Minutes
Courtesy of CBS

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Steve Bannon said the campaign crisis created last year with the revelation of Donald Trump’s ribald conversation with “Access Hollywood” host Billy Bush proved to be a moment that showed who was loyal to Trump and who was not.

In an interview with Charlie Rose of “60 Minutes,” Bannon said that the release of the Bush tape during the fall campaign was a “litmus test.”

“And I said it the other day to [White House Chief of Staff] General [John] Kelly during the Charlottesville thing, afterwards. It’s a line I remember from the movie ‘The Wild Bunch,'” he said. “William Holden uses it right before that huge gunfight at the end. ‘When you side with a man, you side with him,’ okay? The good and the bad. You can criticize him behind, but when you side with him, you have to side with him.”

“CBS This Morning” released more excerpts of the interview on Friday. The full interview will air Sunday on “60 Minutes.”

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After The Washington Post released the tape on Friday, Oct. 8, it created a crisis in the campaign and over that weekend, a number of Republicans called on Trump to drop out of the race. Bannon, who served as campaign CEO and later White House chief strategist, said that Reince Priebus, then the chairman of the Republican National Committee, told Trump, “You have two choices. You either drop out right now, or you lose by the biggest landslide in American political history.”

But Bannon said that he told Trump that he still had a “100% probability of winning.”

“And that’s what Billy Bush weekend showed me,” Bannon said. “Billy Bush Saturday showed me who really had Donald Trump’s back to play to his better angels. All you had to do, and what he did, was go out and continue to talk to the American people. … People didn’t care. They knew Donald Trump was just doing locker room talk with a guy. And they dismissed it. It had no lasting impact on the campaign. Yet, if you see the mainstream media that day, it was, literally, he was falling into Dante’s Inferno.”

Trump dismissed his conversation with Bush as “locker room talk.” But in the interview, Rose pressed Bannon on that characterization, given that Trump talked about grabbing a woman “by the p—-.” Bannon, though, insisted that it was merely “locker room talk” that working class voters didn’t care about.

As they weighed their options after the tape’s release, Bannon said that he continued to insist Trump would win.

“Appealing to the American people and to the working class people in this country, absolutely. You know why? ‘Cause – it was a winner. That’s why I told him ‘double down’ every time. And on that day, that’s the first time and only time he ever got upset with me. He goes, ‘Come on, it’s not 100%.’ I go, ‘It’s absolutely 100%.’ And I told him why. ‘They don’t care.'”

Bannon also said that Chris Christie, who had endorsed Trump, fell out of favor that weekend when he didn’t show up to support Trump.

“I told him, ‘The plane leaves at 11 o’clock in the morning. If you’re on the plane, you’re on the team.’ Didn’t make the plane,” Bannon said.

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  1. I’ve always known that Reince Preibus was in cahoots with 3 other power players (then) in the GOPe; Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan and Scott Walker. All of them are detested by the Trump base. Thank God for Steve Bannon and thank God for Donald Trump!

  2. Ed Goering says:

    I wish fighters like Bannon, Conway and Matis and of course Kelly would Drain the Swamp in Langley

  3. “You can criticize him behind, but when you side with him, you have to side with him.””

    “I told him, ‘The plane leaves at 11 o’clock in the morning. If you’re on the plane, you’re on the team.’ Didn’t make the plane,” Bannon said.”

    MAGA!

  4. Sam says:

    He sounds like a good friend to have and very in touch with what people are thinking. Who hasn’t heard locker room talk it’s on tv and in all the movies and internet. And. Most important. It was compared to big billy. That was a repeat crime of assault. Not jibber jabber filling up rehearsal time on a set that was illegally recorded and a breach of privacy releasing a privileged conversation.
    That’s how his voters felt also that the media committed a lie and more fake news. Did the media mention the tape in the same conversation adding the famous acts of a former pres.that were not just boys talk. We know how they talk. Any woman walking near a construction sight (before p.c. was invented) will be delighted to repeat her story. Along with the hwd access tape story. Haha booo.

  5. Steve Barr says:

    First Bannon can’t even get that quote right , second the only thing Holden says before the gunfight is Let’s Go , third the men at the end of The Wild Bunch are thieves and murderers who die doing the right thing which is something that no one in the Trump administration would ever do because when push comes to shove they are cowards .

    • Steve Barr, I just watched that clip and you are wrong and Bannon is right. Talk about missing the forest for the trees, you’re a real prize. President Trump’s America First agenda is the rightest right thing anyone in the federal government has done for the office since probably George Washington.

      • Dave J says:

        If you think Bannon is right then it’s quite obvious you got a screw loose

      • Wayne Kramer says:

        Bannon quoting from that scene in THE WILD BUNCH is priceless since Pike and his gang were going back to save Angel, the Mexican (who wasn’t a U.S. citizen) and mixing it up with another country’s political strife – everything Bannon is vehemently opposed to. In fact (SPOILER), they all die for their principles in a foreign land when they could have walked away rich – again, not Bannon’s thinking at all. I think Peckinpah would be rolling over in his grave hearing a dipshit like Bannon use THE WILD BUNCH to defend his argument about personal loyalty.

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