Donald Trump has spent much of the past two weeks complaining that “the election is absolutely being rigged by the dishonest and distorted media,” which is exactly the kind of thing his campaign chief executive had railed against during the last presidential election.
“I’m not a whiner,” Steve Bannon said in a 2012 radio interview unearthed by BuzzFeed. “I don’t want to hear that the media’s against us.”
Bannon was speaking on the Conservative Radio Forum with hosts Steven Rosenblum and Daria DiGiovanni.
Bannon certainly did not disagree with the widely held conservative belief that the mainstream media works against Republicans. The Breitbart News website, of which Bannon is chairman, has an entire section devoted to media bias.
But Bannon argued that bias is nothing new, that conservatives have overcome the press to win elections in the past, and that complaining about circumstances isn’t a very conservative thing to do, in the first place.
“The media not being our side is not a newsflash film at 11,” he said. “The media hasn’t been on our side since the ’60s. That’s the hand Ronald Reagan was dealt. That’s the hand Richard Nixon was dealt. And they beat ’em. Why can’t we beat ’em?”
“We’re supposed to be conservatives,” Bannon continued. “That means you overcome what life throws at you. I don’t want to hear people talk about ‘Oh, you know, but the media. The big, bad media.’ “
Trump talks about the big, bad media a lot. So if Bannon is telling his candidate the same thing he told radio listeners four years ago, then Trump is completely ignoring him.