Trump could demote Bannon instead of firing him: report

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President Trump is reportedly “nervous” about potentially firing his chief strategist, Stephen Bannon, as the White House deals with the fallout from the recent exits of several top officials.

The ongoing battle between Bannon and national security adviser H.R. McMaster is causing disruption among top White House aides, according to a Tuesday Reuters report that cited three senior officials.

“The president obviously is very nervous and afraid of firing him,” one source told the news outlet.

{mosads}The same source suggested Trump could demote Bannon rather than fire him in order to avoid fallout from getting rid of Bannon, who is supported by many on the far right.

The latest news describing the behind-the-scenes conflicts inside the West Wing comes as Trump remains under scrutiny for his comments following violence at a white nationalist rally in Charlottesville, Va., over the weekend that left one counterprotester dead 

McMaster has been under fire from Trump loyalists, including Breitbart News, the conservative website that Bannon operated until departing for the Trump campaign last year.

McMaster’s purge of National Security Council staffers close to Bannon is seen unfavorably by individuals on the right, who argue McMaster’s “globalist” views are a betrayal of Trump’s loyal nationalist base.

Trump, for his part, on Tuesday expressed uncertainty about Bannon’s future in the administration, comments that followed reports suggesting Bannon’s job may be in trouble.

“But we’ll see what happens with Mr. Bannon,” Trump said at a news conference. “But he’s a good person, and I think the press treats him frankly very unfairly.”

In a Sunday interview, McMaster avoided a question about his relationship with Bannon, refusing to say whether the two can still work together.

“I get to work together with a broad range of talented people and it is a privilege every day to enable the national security team,” McMaster said.

Tags Donald Trump H.R. McMaster Stephen Bannon

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