Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images(NEW YORK) — Donald Trump campaign CEO and former Breitbart News head Steve Bannon dismissed charges of being a white nationalist, describing himself as an “economic nationalist” in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
“I’m not a white nationalist, I’m a nationalist. I’m an economic nationalist,” he said in an interview with columnist Michael Wolff.
Bannon, whom Trump has tapped for a senior role in his White House, has been criticized for his leadership of Breitbart, and the controversial conservative website’s stories and headlines.
Bannon also said Trump is planning a “trillion-dollar infrastructure plan” to help the president-elect deliver on his campaign pledge to create jobs.
“Like [Andrew] Jackson’s populism, we’re going to build an entirely new political movement,” Bannon said. “The conservatives are going to go crazy. I’m the guy pushing a trillion-dollar infrastructure plan. With negative interest rates throughout the world, it’s the greatest opportunity to rebuild everything.”
While Democrats have expressed interest in working with Trump on an infrastructure package, fiscal conservatives on Capitol Hill are wary of approving any new spending that plan could involve.
Bannon, who rarely gives interviews, also criticized the media’s coverage of Trump, along with Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign and strategy.
Trump has been criticized by Democrats and a number of religious groups for his selection of Bannon, who will run his administration along with newly named chief of staff Reince Priebus, the current chairman of the Republican National Committee.
Bannon’s critics have accused him of peddling white supremacy, sexism and antisemitism in interviews and on Breitbart.
Republicans have largely remained quiet on Bannon’s appointment, though some have defended Trump’s right to select his own staff.
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