Top Trump Adviser Steve Bannon Cited Racist Anti-Immigrant Book In Radio Appearance

Steve Bannon, the former Breitbart chief who is now slated to be Donald Trump’s chief strategist in the White House, is notorious for using the conservative media platform he ran to promote the racist, misogynistic and anti-Semitic views of the white nationalist Alt-Right movement.

Among the troubling voices given a platform at Breitbart under Bannon’s leadership was Jason Richwine. As The Daily Beast reported in August, when Bannon left Breitbart to take a top spot on Trump’s campaign:

Bannon didn’t just make Breitbart a safe space for white supremacists; he’s also welcomed a scholar blacklisted from the mainstream conservative movement for arguing there’s a connection between race and IQ. Breitbart frequently highlights the work of Jason Richwine, who resigned from the conservative Heritage Foundation when news broke that his Harvard dissertation argued in part that Hispanics have lower IQs than non-Hispanic whites.

Bannon loves Richwine. On Jan. 6 of this year, when Richwine was a guest on [Bannon’s Sirius XM] radio show, Bannon called him “one of the smartest brains out there in demographics, demography, this whole issue of immigration, what it means to this country.”

There’s more to that January 6 interview. After praising Richwine for being “one of the smartest brains” on demographic issues, Bannon said that he believed that the presidential election was “going to become a referendum on this whole issue of what is the sovereignty of our country, what is legal immigration, what is illegal immigration, what are we prepared to do with people here illegally, what about this whole situation in Europe … the whole thing in Europe is all about immigration, it’s a global issue today, this kind of global Camp of the Saints.”

“The Camp of The Saints” is a racist dystopian anti-immigrant novel beloved of white supremacists. The Southern Poverty Law Center describes the plot:

The book depicts an invasion of France and the white Western world by a fleet of starving, dark-skinned refugees, characterized as horrific and uncivilized “monsters” who will stop at nothing to greedily and violently seize what rightfully belongs to the white man.

SPLC notes that a 2015 Breitbart piece on refugees invoked the book; the site similarly promoted the book in 2014.

In the interview with Bannon, Richwine went on to argue that the GOP shouldn’t try to adjust its positions to attract the votes of immigrants, claiming that  he doubted conservatism could “survive a major demographic change” that would “change substantially the culture and institutions of our country.”

Bannon concluded the interview by calling Richwine “an American hero” and a “true patriot,” noting that “we’ve got this entire site of Breitbart and this news show is to make sure that voices like yours are heard.”