Dear Commons Community,
Yesterday Donald Trump shook up the management of his campaign by adding two new top level managers to his staff. Stephen Bannon, a former banker who runs the conservative outlet Breitbart News and is known for his fiercely anti-establishment politics, has been named the Trump campaign’s chief executive. Kellyanne Conway, a veteran Republican pollster who has been close to Trump for years, will assume the role of campaign manager. Much of the attention with this announcement has been on Bannon and Breibart. The New York Times published an article this morning describing the two.
“The Breitbart News Network, usually just called Breitbart, is a conservative-leaning news website. It was founded in 2007 by Andrew Breitbart, a former liberal from Los Angeles who became a conservative standard-bearer until his death from heart failure at 43 in 2012.
The site that bears his name comprises about a dozen different verticals that feature original reporting and commentary, including three of its most prominent sites: Big Government, Big Journalism and Big Hollywood. A fourth “Big” site, BigPeace.com, now redirects to Breitbart’s National Security section.
Under the supervision of its founder, Breitbart gained prominence by breaking news about a series of scandals involving liberal politicians, bureaucrats and organizations, and by relentlessly pushing those stories…
The website is loathed by many liberals, moderates and establishment Republicans who say it stokes a partisan atmosphere and misleads readers in order to escalate what they see as nonissues. But it has been beloved by many on the right as an answer to mainstream media organizations, including The Times, that are viewed as liberal in outlook.
Stephen Bannon, is a Navy veteran who has a background in finance and used to work at Goldman Sachs, was an adviser to Sarah Palin and has been a longtime adviser to Mr. Trump. He became the executive chairman of Breitbart in 2012, after Mr. Breitbart’s death, and helped adapt the anti-Clinton book “Clinton Cash” into a film.
Not all of Mr. Breitbart’s friends are happy with the direction in which Mr. Bannon took the site. Ben Shapiro, a conservative commentator who was 17 when he met Mr. Breitbart and who became the editor-at-large of Breitbart.com in 2012 about three weeks before Mr. Breitbart died, said in an interview “As I said when I left Breitbart, I am absolutely appalled by what Breitbart’s become. I think Bannon has perverted Breitbart’s legacy.”
If you can imagine it, this election is about to get dirtier.