On Tuesday, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s latest campaign “shake up” resulted in the demotion of Paul Manafort, who will stay on as chairman but will have considerably less power. Trump also added two new high-level advisers.
According to reports, Breitbart News Chairman Stephen Bannon will serve as the campaign CEO. Kellyanne Conway, who was already a senior adviser, will now be Trump’s new campaign manager, a role that Manafort also filled following the exit of Corey Lewandowski.
Confused yet? Well, welcome aboard the Trump campaign.
To sort all of this out, CNN spoke with the ever enlightening Trump campaign spokesperson Katrina Pierson on Wednesday about what these new changes mean for the campaign. Pierson chastised host Carol Costello as well the media for stating that the Trump campaign underwent a “shake up.”
The media and many on the right who have always been vocal against Mr. Trump have been writing this campaign’s obituary for over 400 days and it hasn’t worked yet,” Pierson told the group. “The thing is, when we are talking about campaign additions — and I know CNN is focusing on [Breitbart’s] Bannon for whatever reason. He’s not in charge of communications, he’s just the CEO.
“But he has a prominent role in the Trump campaign,” Costello pointed out.
But that brings me to my next point, Carol,” Pierson continued. “We have not spent nearly as much time talking about Hillary Clinton’s campaign infrastructure, particularly Huma Abedin and her dual role at the State Department and the Clinton Foundation.”
“I know you want to deflect,” Costello acknowledged. “And I appreciate that because that’s your job.”
However, Peirson’s spin track was already playing and she didn’t even hear the host’s remarks because she was busy whining about “direct ties to the Russian government” within the Clinton campaign.
Costello, as well as the two other guest panelists — Jason Johnson, Political Editor for The Root and Maria Cardona, CNN Political Commentator — looked on in disbelief.
Let’s talk about John Podesta, let’s talk about his brother Tony, let’s talk about the banks they’re involved with, let’s talk about the boards that they sit on,” Pierson droned. “We’re not talking about that here on CNN.
That’s because Donald Trump just shook up his campaign for the second time in a two month period!” Costello exclaimed.
No, he didn’t,” Pierson shouted back. “He added. Donald Trump adds people to his campaign. No one is out. When you shake up your campaign that usually means someone is out.”
“CNN is probably the only one reporting that some shake-up is happening,” the Trump spokesperson insisted.
“I dare to suggest this,” Costello said. “That no one was ousted simply because Mr. Trump didn’t want this to appear to be a shake-up.”
“This is not something that people are being replaced,” Pierson declared. “This is an expansion of the team.”
“Even Fox News is calling this a shake-up,” Costello stated, shaking her head.
“But that’s what I’m saying,” Pierson shot back. “It’s not a shake-up!”
For those unfamiliar with the controversy surrounding Breitbart, the Breitbart website (which Bannon operates) has a long history of racism, Islamophobia, and bigotry. The site has recently begun to cater more to those affiliated with the “Alt-Right” movement. The Southern Poverty Law Center describes the Alt-Right movement:
The Alternative Right, commonly known as the Alt-Right, is a set of far-right ideologies, groups and individuals whose core belief is that “white identity” is under attack by multicultural forces using “political correctness” and “social justice” to undermine white people and “their” civilization. Characterized by heavy use of social media and online memes, Alt-Righters eschew “establishment” conservatism, skew young, and embrace white ethno-nationalism as a fundamental value.
While Alt-Righters are strongly nationalistic, they also prefer the establishment of neo-feudalism over America’s current democratic republic. Under their ideal system, America would have a king or strongman in charge of making all important decisions. Alt-Righters are naturally some of Trump’s most vocal and passionate supporters.
Featured image via screen cap.