Whistleblower: Bannon wanted to suppress black vote

Whistleblower: Bannon wanted to suppress black vote
© Greg Nash

Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie told Congress on Wednesday that the firm used by President TrumpDonald John TrumpNFL freezes policy barring players from protesting during anthem McConnell spokesman on Putin visit: 'There is no invitation from Congress' Petition urges University of Virginia not to hire Marc Short MORE's campaign in 2016 engaged in "voter disengagement" tactics targeting black Americans.

In an interview with CNN after his testimony, Wylie said that Bannon, who held a position on the firm's board before joining the Trump campaign, directed the firm to research suppressing the vote among black Americans.

Other liberal demographic groups were also targeted, Wylie said.

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"Mr. Bannon sees cultural warfare as the means to create enduring change in American politics. It was for this reason Mr. Bannon engaged SCL [Cambridge Analytica's parent company], a foreign military contractor, to build an arsenal of informational weapons he could deploy on the American population," Wylie said Wednesday.

That information is then used to "discourage or demobilize certain types of people from voting," he added, including African-Americans, which Wylie says were particular targets of the operations.

During the hearing before the Senate Intelligence Committee, Wylie was asked by Sen. Christopher CoonsChristopher (Chris) Andrew CoonsAnti-Trump protesters hold candlelight vigil by White House Hillicon Valley: EU hits Google with record B fine | Trump tries to clarify Russia remarks | Sinclair changing deal to win over FCC | Election security bill gets traction | Robocall firm exposed voter data Overnight Defense: More Trump drama over Russia | Appeals court rules against Trump on transgender ban | Boeing wins Air Force One contract | Military parade to reportedly cost M MORE (D-Del.) whether Bannon's goal "was to suppress voting or discourage certain individuals in the U.S. from voting."

"That was my understanding, yes," Wylie replied.

Wylie made headlines earlier this year when he revealed that as many as 87 million people may have had their data harvested by Cambridge Analytica without their consent as a result of a third-party application.

The resulting press was devastating for Facebook and led to CEO Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergHillicon Valley: Officials pressed on Russian interference at security forum | FCC accuses Sinclair of deception | Microsoft reveals Russia tried to hack three 2018 candidates | Trump backs Google in fight with EU | Comcast gives up on Fox bid Facebook's Zuckerberg congratulated Trump after 2016 election: report Facebook to start removing misleading posts that incite violence MORE's testimony on Capitol Hill. In early May, the data firm announced it was shutting down over the media coverage.