During Steve Bannon’s first full weekday back running Breitbart, the website he once called “the platform for the alt-right” published a defense of the VDare Foundation, a white supremacist organization that cancelled a conference scheduled to take place in April 2018 after a Colorado Springs resort owner warned they couldn’t ensure attendees’ safety.
The piece, written by openly xenophobic former Colorado congressman Tom Tancredo, claims the resort owners’ decision — which came in response to pressure from local officials — shows that “the left does not need to show up and disrupt an event, they can merely threaten to do so and city officials run for cover like cockroaches.”
Tancredo, who works as a regular Breitbart columnist, doesn’t mention that that VDare is a white supremacist organization. According to Media Matters, VDare’s website has run articles under headlines like, “One Problem With These Hispanic Immigrants Is Their Disgusting Behavior,” “Indians Aren’t That Intelligent (On Average),” “Diversity Is Strength! It’s Also…Hispanic Immigrants Taking Over FBI’s Ten Most Wanted,” “America Does Not Need ANY Immigrants From Africa,” and “Roll Over, JIHAD—There’s Also HIJRA, Muslim Conquest By Immigration.”
Tancredo has been described by Bannon as “one of the top immigration experts in the country.” As Media Matters notes, Tancredo’s byline has appeared on incendiary columns arguing in favor of European colonization and making the case that multiculturalism is a “virus” that’s “destroying” that United States. Early last year, Tancredo wrote that because of America’s immigration policies, “Muslim rape culture … could be coming to a town near you all too soon.”
Bannon, who ran Breitbart before joining the Trump campaign last summer and then followed Trump to Washington, D.C., was ousted from his role as White House chief strategist last Friday. Before the day was through, he presided over a Breitbart editorial meeting. Bannon told the Weekly Standard that he feels “jacked up” to get back to the site, adding, “Now I’m free… I’ve got my hands back on my weapons. Someone said, ‘It’s Bannon the Barbarian.’ I am definitely going to crush the opposition.”
“The populist-nationalist movement got a lot stronger today,” Breitbart News Editor-in-Chief Alex Marlow said a statement regarding Bannon’s return.
Though Bannon tried to distance himself from white nationalism shortly after the election, Breitbart’s decision to run the Tancredo column on his first full day back indicates that the site will continue to defend and promote white nationalism — sometimes under the guise of the First Amendment.
Breitbart ran the Tancredo column on the same day German footballer Lukas Podolski threatened to sue the publication for publishing a photo of him on a jet ski under an article with the headline, “SPANISH POLICE CRACK GANG MOVING MIGRANTS ON JET-SKIS.”
Breitbart with an EPIC fail – that's Lukas Podolski, you know, the German footballer pic.twitter.com/DN3GiqGxYO
— Lee Hurley (@HLeeHurley) August 20, 2017
Breitbart later affixed the following Editor’s Note to the story:
A previous version of this story included an image of Lukas Podolski on a jet ski. This image appeared as an illustration of a person on a jet ski. Breitbart London wishes to apologise to Mr. Podolski. There is no evidence Mr. Podolski is either a migrant gang member, nor being human trafficked. We wish Mr. Podolski well in his recently announced international retirement.
Bannon’s return comes after a tough stretch of time for Breitbart. According to Sleeping Giants, a online group that has successfully pressured hundreds of advertisers to abandon Breitbart.com, the site has lost more than 2,500 advertisers in recent months.