(CNSNews.com) - President Donald Trump issued a rebuke of former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon on Wednesday, saying Bannon has “lost his mind” after Bannon called the June 2016 Trump Tower meeting between Trump’s top campaign officials and a group of Russians “treasonous.”
“Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind. Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party,” Trump said in a statement issued by White House Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders.
“Now that he is on his own, Steve is learning that winning isn’t as easy as I make it look. Steve had very little to do with our historic victory, which was delivered by the forgotten men and women of this country. Yet Steve had everything to do with the loss of a Senate seat in Alabama held for more than thirty years by Republicans,” Trump said, referring to the defeat of GOP gubernatorial candidate Roy Moore.
“Steve doesn’t represent my base—he’s only in it for himself,” Trump said. “Steve pretends to be at war with the media, which he calls the opposition party, yet he spent his time at the White House leaking false information to the media to make himself seem far more important than he was. It is the only thing he does well.
“Steve was rarely in a one-on-one meeting with me and only pretends to have had influence to fool a few people with no access and no clue, whom he helped write phony books,” he said.
“We have many great Republican members of Congress and candidates who are very supportive of the Make America Great Again agenda. Like me, they love the United States of America and are helping to finally take our country back and build it up, rather than simply seeking to burn it all down,” the president said.
“The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor – with no lawyers. They didn't have any lawyers,” Bannon said, according to journalist Michael Wolff, whose book "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House," is due out next week.
"Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad s–t, and I happen to think it's all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately," Bannon added.
Sanders commented further on the book, saying it “is filled with false and misleading accounts from individuals who have no access or influence with the White House.”
“Participating in a book that can only be described as trashy tabloid fiction exposes their sad desperate attempts at relevancy,” Sanders said according to pool reports.
Stephanie Grisham, communications director for first lady Melania Trump, said, “The book is clearly going to be sold in the bargain fiction section. Mrs. Trump supported her husband's decision to run for President and in fact, encouraged him to do so. She was confident he would win and was very happy when he did.”