August 11, 2017 11:09 am -

Guess which blotchy, bloated Trumpster has not been invited to all the cool meetings lately?

The conservative news site Breitbart has waged a nonstop campaign against national security adviser H.R. McMaster, but so far it seems to have done the most damage to someone else: Steve Bannon.

A Wall Street Journal editorial earlier this week accused Bannon of using the right-wing media to go after his ideological foes, questioning his loyalty to the president and placing blame for White House dysfunction squarely on his shoulders.

The attacks on McMaster have put Bannon in an especially awkward position with his new boss, retired Marine general John Kelly, who has been increasingly defensive of McMaster, a longtime friend and fellow general, according to interviews with 10 administration officials and people close to the White House. McMaster, who pushed Bannon off the National Security Council principals’ committee, hasn’t spoken to Bannon in weeks, one senior administration official said.

Bannon has grown more isolated without his ally Priebus in the West Wing. He remained in Washington this week while the president and other top staff have decamped to the Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J., and spends his days either holed up in his office or attending meetings. He avoids openly scuffling with his colleagues, as he often did in the past, and has moved to align himself with Kelly, telling allies inside and outside the White House that the arrival of the former secretary of Homeland Security was a win for Trump’s nationalist supporters.

Bannon was cut out of meetings on tax reform in July, after his proposal to raise taxes on the wealthy appeared in the press, and again when his idea to hire contractors in Afghanistan rather than expanding troop levels got publicity—just as McMaster was pushing for a mini-surge in the region.

A person close to Bannon said that the tax proposal likely leaked out because he was consulting with business leaders about it.

Yesterday, Bannon called a bruised Trump true believer, no doubt to commiserate:

Just hours after Jeffrey Lord — President Donald Trump’s most dedicated cable news apologist — was fired from his gig as a CNN commentator, he got a call from White House strategist Steve Bannon.

According to a report in Penn Live, Bannon was one of the first people to call Lord following his firing, who said the controversial White House staffer called to voice support for his “no apology tour.”

It was more like a “no managing your own mouth and tweets” tour, Steve. And we wouldn’t be surprised if you get a call from Lord in the near future to buck you up after John Kelly votes you off the White House reality show island!

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Dave "Doctor" Gonzo is a renegade media producer, occasional bassist, web developer, and Grammy® voter. He is editor and senior contributor to News Behaving Badly. He has written for American Politics Journal, Alan Colmes' Liberaland (Dave was also a semi-frequent Friday guest on Alan's radio show), and (in print) Audio Review. Dave lives in s fortified compound with doorman in Manhattan's not-so-trendy Yorkville neighborhood.