White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Thursday that Breitbart News should consider cutting ties with chairman Stephen Bannon over his recently published remarks critical of Donald Trump Jr.Don TrumpHow Trump uses fundraising emails to remain undisputed leader of the GOP Donald Trump Jr. joins Cameo Book claims Trump family members were 'inappropriately' close with Secret Service agents MORE
“I certainly think that it's something they should look at and consider,” Sanders said at a press briefing.
Trump and his administration are piling on Bannon a day after the release of excerpts from author Michael Wolff’s book, "Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House," revealed that Bannon had described Donald Trump Jr. as “treasonous” and “unpatriotic” for setting up a 2016 meeting at Trump Tower with a Russian lawyer.
Trump blasted back at Bannon in a statement, saying he had “lost his mind” and was only ever involved with the campaign for his own personal benefit. The White House has furiously defended Trump Jr. and denied that he did anything wrong by attending the meeting.
GOP mega-donor Robert Mercer and his daughter Rebekah Mercer, who owns a majority stake in Breitbart News, are reportedly furious with Bannon and are said to be considering cutting off any financial ties with him.
It is unclear whether that would extend to Breitbart News, where Bannon is chairman and has turned the right-wing news outlet into a conservative media juggernaut.
Bannon has not released any statements addressing the controversy over his remarks but in a Wednesday night radio show praised the president as a “great man.”
"You know I support him day in and day out,” Bannon said.
The White House has sought to downplay Bannon’s role in the Trump campaign — he was a senior adviser — as well as his influence within the White House, where he was once chief strategist.
"I’m not aware that they were ever particularly close," Sanders said Thursday.
Trump said earlier in the day that the two don’t talk on the phone.
“He called me a great man last night," Trump said. "So he obviously changed his tune pretty quick.”