In a strong defense of the former president, Trump ally and political strategist Steve Bannon battered GOP “oligarchs,” who he accused of working against Donald Trump‘s 2024 campaign.

Bannon called out “hedge fund guys,” like Ken Griffin, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and Fox News owner Rupert Murdoch, who he said are out of touch with conservative voters.

Much of Bannon’s role, as a key part of Trump’s team since the 2016 race, has been to paint the MAGA movement as “anti-establishment” and a counter to elites from both political parties. This strategy was quite effective in 2016 against what many viewed as a more “establishment” candidate in Hillary Clinton.

While Trump’s rhetoric—often shaped on the inside by Bannon—has been populist at times, many of his policies resemble other Republican presidents. The Trump administration made industry deregulation and tax cuts for the rich key policy priorities.

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Bannon then accused the GOP “oligarchs” of forcing primary candidates, such as Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, former Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, Sen. Tim Scott (R-South Carolina) and former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley on the Republican base.

“It’s not relevant,” he said. “We don’t have time for on-the-job training [instead of] a man that gave us four yearsfour yearsof peace and prosperity!” 

Bannon’s specific callout of Murdoch comes just days after the Fox News chairman admitted in a deposit that he did not believe Trump’s “rigged election” conspiracy theory surrounding the 2020 election.

Murdoch’s deposition is part of a larger lawsuit in which Fox News hosts have been caught knowingly lying about the 2020 election. Fox’s parent company is being sued by Dominion Voting Systems for $1.6 billion, in a defamation suit claiming that Fox News damaged the company’s reputation by repeating false claims about the voting technology used.

Trump has not been on Fox News since September, in what some are calling a “soft ban” of the former president. Trump’s family members, who were once frequent contributors to the network, have also been absent.

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