"He Slipped Up": The One Thing Bannon Told Congress Yesterday That Could Haunt Trump

As discussed earlier, one of the major concerns about Steve Bannon's closed-door testimony before the House Intelligence Committee on Tuesday, is that he refused to discuss any of the things that were of biggest interest to his interrogators.

As we reported, Bannon invoked executive privilege during his meeting to avoid sharing details about his time in the Trump administration, where he served as chief strategist, or during the presidential transition. In fact, Bannon reportedly stopped answering questions once his lawyers had alerted the White House that the scope of the House panel's questions would be expanded to include his time in the White House.

However, as Axios reports, Bannon made one conspicuous slip up: he admitted that he'd had conversations with Reince Priebus, Sean Spicer and legal spokesman Mark Corallo about Don Junior's meeting with the Russians in Trump Tower in June 2016. As a reminder, this is the meeting that Bannon allegedly told Michael Wolff was "treasonous", and led to the violent fallout in relations between Trump and Bannon.

This matters because the meeting — and the subsequent drafting of an allegedly misleading statement on Air Force One — has become one of the most important focal points of the Russia investigations, both on Capitol Hill and within Robert Mueller's team, as it provides the closest thing that exists to evidence that the Trump campaign was willing to entertain collusion with Russians, according to Axios' Jonathan Swan.

Bannon immediately realized he'd slipped up and disclosed conversations he wasn't supposed to discuss, because they happened while he was chief strategist in the White House. Throughout the rest of the session, committee members — in particular Republican Trey Gowdy and Democrat Adam Schiff — hammered Bannon over the fact that he'd mentioned those conversations but refused to discuss anything else about his time in the White House.

This is also why the pressure on Bannon to disclose all he knows will only grow, and also why Mueller will be especially interested in what he has to say.

Aside from this once incident, Axios reports the following "insider-the-room" moments:

  • After the hearing started, the New York Times dropped its story about the grand jury subpoena of Bannon. Nobody in the room had their phones — it's the protocol in closed-door intelligence hearings — but an official walked in to inform the committee and Bannon's team of the story.
  • At that point, the committee paused its proceedings and there was a scramble to figure out how to proceed, and how to ensure they did everything properly insofar as the Mueller probe went. (The committee informed Mueller's team several days earlier that it was calling Bannon in as a witness, and they didn't hear back from Mueller's team so viewed that as a green light.)
  • Trey Gowdy, who led the Republican questioning, pressed Bannon hard on his description of Don Junior's Trump Tower meeting as "treasonous." Gowdy asked Bannon whether he would consider it treason for somebody close to him to approach Wikileaks' Julian Assange to get opposition research on Hillary Clinton. Bannon replied that such a scenario would be bad judgment. Then Gowdy produced emails from a Cambridge Analytica employee — the Trump campaign data firm closely affiliated with Bannon — boasting of just such contacts with Assange. Bannon claimed this was the first time he'd seen these emails (though they've been in the news.)
  • Bannon attacked the Republicans running these congressional committees for choosing to investigate the Trump campaign and Russia. He said it was part of an "establishment" plan to try to "nullify" the election result. Gowdy challenged him on that, asking Bannon who is this establishment you refer to who is trying to nullify Trump's victory? Bannon answered: Paul Ryan and Mitch McConnell. Gowdy countered that Bannon couldn't have it both ways. Was he also referring to Trump confidant Kevin McCarthy — the leader of the Republican House conference — who is surely part of the same Ryan-McConnell "establishment?"
  • Another pointed question to Bannon: When he told author Michael Wolff there was a "zero" percent chance that Don Junior didn't bring the Russians up to see his father after their meeting, how did he know that happened? I'm told Bannon all but conceded he was purely speculating.
  • Throughout the hearing, Bannon kept telling the committee members: "I really want to answer this question," and "I really wish I could answer these questions." That became a sore point with members. They kept asking him why he felt liberated to abandon executive privilege and leak prolifically about the White House to journalists and author Wolff, but wouldn't talk to Congress.
  • Bannon, at one point, praised the committee members for the professionalism and preparedness. (But a source familiar with Bannon's thinking told me he made the compliment "tongue-in-cheek.")

 

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Comments

Billy the Poet NoDebt Wed, 01/17/2018 - 15:54 Permalink

Not sure if anyone has noticed but Hillary admits she paid for a dossier sourced from Kremlin operatives in order to influence the election.

How Ex-Spy Christopher Steele Compiled His Explosive Trump-Russia Dossier

Source A—to use the careful nomenclature of his dossier—was “a senior Russian Foreign Ministry figure.” Source B was “a former top level intelligence officer still active in the Kremlin.”

https://www.vanityfair.com/news/2017/03/how-the-explosive-russian-dossi…

In reply to by NoDebt

Oldwood stizazz Wed, 01/17/2018 - 20:14 Permalink

I hope you enjoy living on your sparsley populated morally pure island. Send us a card.

If you haven't noticed, the only morally pure appear to exist on this blog, except of course those whom you do not agree.

Maybe Mueller should "investigate" you and see exactly how pure you really are....do you support apartheid in America, or open borders?

In reply to by stizazz

MoreFreedom Billy the Poet Wed, 01/17/2018 - 23:23 Permalink

"... the Trump campaign was willing to entertain collusion with Russians"

Getting dirt on Clinton isn't illegal.  If it is, then Clinton and the DNC are more guilty because they paid their lawyer, who paid Fusion GPS, who paid Russians for dirt that turned out to be fake.   Frankly, colluding with Russia isn't a crime either, unless one asked Russia to break the law, say to burglarize the DNC headquarters to see what they are up to like Nixon did.  It's not illegal for a foreigner to state their preference for who gets elected in the US (which Putin didn't do anyway). 

Bannon just doesn't like Kushner, whose Democrat family history is one of criminal activity though Jared hasn't been convicted of any crime. 

 

In reply to by Billy the Poet

Librarian NoDebt Wed, 01/17/2018 - 15:56 Permalink

Well.  This is as painful to watch as a horror movie in which the heroine is trying to get away from the monster but she keeps falling to the ground every 3 steps.  You are correct.

Bookmark this if you need to.  Because I am now calling this shitshow in favor of Trump.  The key to this was the UK.  Their spook Mifsud got unexpectedly and thoroughly burned.  So crispy burned was he, that he had to flee Stirling University, his spy school with all of its "diplomatic" professorial perks in disgrace with his professional pants around his ankles.  

Here is where it gets interesting.  It seems that the UK is in a bit of a tight spot at this point, what with the EU being standoffish economically due to some hurt feelings regarding the Brexit.  So, much to the UK's shuffling embarrassment, Prof Mifsud has now been permanently "reassigned".  In fact, the NYT already began yesterday to sow the narrative seeds that will Prof. Mifsud is a traitor and an honest-to-dobrozhnost Rooski agent.

In reply to by NoDebt

Dickweed Wang Librarian Wed, 01/17/2018 - 19:57 Permalink

You make some good points and it seems to confirm that people should realize nothing is at it seems, at least when it comes to what is being thrown around publicly.  My guess is most of what is being reported about all of this is nothing more than a distraction. 

Case in point is one issue no-one in the MSM is talking about and that is the over 10,000 criminal indictments filed in Federal District Courts since the end of August, spanning every jurisdiction in the US (which is totally unprecedented in the history of the USA).  I bet there are a lot of powerful people that know they will be impacted by those indictments in one way or another and they are going to do everything in their power to head things off at the pass, or at least create some problem with their accusers (i.e. the Trump Administration) to draw attention away from themselves.

In reply to by Librarian

Vageling NoDebt Wed, 01/17/2018 - 17:24 Permalink

Whatever it is NoDebt... This is chess. They're all up to something. We "little folks" can just wonder. Watch the pieces move.  Oh, and play bullshit like 4D chess.  shit is odd. I doubt there is any love between Bannon and Trump. But I'll be damned if Bannon goes full retard. Somebody are playing games here. 

In reply to by NoDebt

Vageling swmnguy Wed, 01/17/2018 - 17:39 Permalink

You mean... You are? Yeah we noticed. What does the kollektiv say about this? Not like you have any personal say on this. Yeah, that! Fucking parrot commie. The kollektiv doesn't allow that. "We are the Borg, you will be assimilated". You don't even qualify for a jury, either. That bias, eh? Let that sink in! And he got elected POTUS.

Fuck... Paging Stalin... Stat! Paging Mao... Fuck, Page Lenin...  Page Hitler... Oh wait, don't do that. He;s "bad" while the the rest of the bad men are not.  "We" need to kill people who disagree. Fucking commie! I love to drag you down Eastern Europe.  They got mucho love for you, not. 

Yeah... I know your type. Fuck you. Drowning boy. I don't hope you get some fatal accident. If you did... Meh ;)

In reply to by swmnguy

any_mouse dasein211 Wed, 01/17/2018 - 15:24 Permalink

The whole Bannon affair smells.

Bannon is fired. Bannon goes on the warpath.

That book about the WH is released, eventually freely available as a PDF.

More Bannon in the MSM.

Finally, Mueller summons Bannon. This is what Bannon wanted all along.

Bannon "slips up".

RussiaGate is a zombie, a golem.

Bannon made sure it still walks among us.

In reply to by dasein211

Vageling any_mouse Wed, 01/17/2018 - 18:08 Permalink

eventually freely available as a PDF

That's what I wondered too. I have it. Fuck... It reads like shit. Some novel being presented as documentary? I gave up by the way, just to be honest. No way I can read that shit. Better watch fag boy Spacy in his "wicked" series. Even the corrupt policunts love it, until....  And No... I heard a lot about it but never watched it [House of Cards]. Waste of my time. Without one serie show I can learn alot about the world. It's like an hour? Fuck, what I can do with an hour. Fucking zombies. Fiction is fiction and reality is reality.  His book... Sorry I tuned out. Somebody was better off creating some cartoon. These usually stick. 

Noticed this BS?

Burn    Rate:
How    I    Survived    the    Gold    Rush    Years    on    the    Internet
Where    We    Stand
White    Kids

Or this, which pisses him of so much:

No    part    of    this    publication    may    be    reproduced,    stored    in    a    retrieval    system,    or    transmitted,    in    any    form    or    by
any    means,    without    the    prior    permission    in    writing    of    the    publisher,    nor    be    otherwise    circulated    in    any    form
of    binding    or    cover    other    than    that    in    which    it    is    published    and    without    a    similar    condition    including    this
condition    being    imposed    on    the    subsequent    purchaser. 

Rest my case 

In reply to by any_mouse

BritBob Wed, 01/17/2018 - 15:04 Permalink

As far as the Russians under Putin are concerned, the Cold War never ended.

Russia tells Britain give back the Falklands before telling US what to do.

RUSSIA has told Britain it should "clean its conscience" and give back the Falkland Islands before it criticises them over their involvement in Ukraine. Moscow's ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin made the shocking remarks when responding to his British counterpart Matthew Rycroft at a UN security council meeting in New York. (Daily Express 4 Feb 2017)

How would a map of the world look today if all of the territory lost and gained over the past 180 years reverted to its 19th century status? Quite a ridiculous proposal.

Falklands – Acquisitive Prescription(1 pg): https://www.academia.edu/35552595/Falklands_-Acquisitive_Prescription

And what would Russia look like?

Dilluminati JRobby Wed, 01/17/2018 - 15:15 Permalink

I'm starting to think the chief difference between bannon and trump is where they see things in respect to generational theory.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strauss%E2%80%93Howe_generational_theory

Bannon is huge on the book

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/08/us/politics/stephen-bannon-book-four…

Where I'm getting really pissed off with bannon is he is doing nothing but tossing shit in the air as self-appointed muckster in the 4th stage, and Trump is in the 3rd.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strauss%E2%80%93Howe_generational_theory#…

Hero versus artist

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strauss%E2%80%93Howe_generational_theory#…

unraveling versus crisis

So bannon is just doing everything he can as a catharsis for tumult, but he bites both sides of the aisle, dude wants revolution and he bannon is the party..  dudes out there...

so I wish he'd just get a swift kick in the cunt and go away..

In reply to by JRobby