Steve Bannon Once Ran an Eco-Experiment. It Didn't Go Well

Admitted in 1996 trial to calling female worker 'bimbo,' threatening to ram memo down her 'f---ing throat'
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 16, 2016 1:31 PM CST
Bannon's Time in Eco-Experiment Marred by Claims of Harassment
Steve Bannon, campaign CEO for President-elect Donald Trump, leaves Trump Tower on Friday in New York.   (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

While Donald Trump's choice of "terrifying man" Steven Bannon as his chief strategist is causing wide denouncement, an ecological and sociological experiment he took part in more than 20 years ago is bubbling up, complete with lawsuits and allegations of threats and sexual harassment, reports the Arizona Republic. Bannon worked as a consultant in the early '90s for Biosphere 2, which per Motherboard involved eight scientists living in a locked 3-acre dome for two years to see if they could survive in a "closed," self-sufficient environment—a precursor to possible future space colonization. Bannon briefly resigned as CEO of the project, but when he came back in 1994 is when things became heated. A Biosphere project manager filed a sexual harassment complaint against Bannon for making lewd and denigrating remarks toward her and other workers (that case was settled).

And in a court appearance regarding another female crew member (one of two workers who broke into the dome to warn other crew that Bannon had been rehired), Bannon admitted he'd threatened to ram a safety memo she wrote "down her f---ing throat" and that he'd called her a "bimbo," per Mother Jones. Those two crew members were awarded $600,000 from the project's parent company (though they were ordered to pay $41,000 for breaking into the dome). Not everyone's surprised. "Donald Trump spent his campaign surrounding himself with known misogynists and he's doing the same with the White House," a rep for the Emily's List PAC tells Newsweek. "Women can and will hold him accountable." Oddly, considering his new boss is dismissive of climate change, Bannon seemed on board during Biosphere with the harmful impact of greenhouse gases, Mother Jones notes. (More Steve Bannon stories.)

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