Bannon: '100%' Sure Trump Would Win After Billy Bush Tape

He says Christie wasn't so sure and it cost him
By Michael Harthorne,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 8, 2017 1:40 PM CDT
Bannon: Reaction to Billy Bush Tape Cost Christie a Job
Steve Bannon says he believed "100%" that Donald Trump would win the presidency after the release of the "Access Hollywood" tape.   (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Steve Bannon says he, unlike other advisers, didn't lose faith in President Trump after the release of the Access Hollywood tape—and it was a lack of similar faith that cost at least one adviser a gig in the White House, CBS News reports. Trump's former chief strategist gave his first major interview after leaving the administration to 60 Minutes. In a clip released ahead of its Sunday airing, Bannon says Trump held a meeting with his advisers following the release of the tape, which showed him bragging to Billy Bush about groping women. While others advised Trump to drop out of the race or face the biggest loss in history, Bannon says he told Trump, "You have 100% probability of winning." He says the American people "knew Donald Trump was just doing locker room talk" and didn't care about the tape.

Bannon says not everyone was so confident and that "Billy Bush Saturday" was a "litmus test" that "showed me who really had Donald Trump's back." One of the people who failed the test, according to Bannon, was Chris Christie, and that's why the New Jersey governor was never given a position in the White House. But Christie's senior campaign strategist tells the Independent Journal Review that "is simply not true" and that Christie turned down "more than a half-dozen" offers from Trump in order to finish out his term as governor. Meanwhile, in another portion of the 60 Minutes interview, Bannon says Paul Ryan, Mitch McConnell, and other Republican leaders are trying to "nullify" the 2016 election. "They do not want Donald Trump's populist, economic nationalist agenda to be implemented," he says. "It's very obvious." (Bannon also criticized the Catholic Church.)

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