Several people in Donald Trump's orbit seemed to know in advance that the former President was going to call for his lint-licking fire-breathing supporters to march to the Capitol on Jan. 6. Former Trump White House strategist Steve Bannon seemed to know something huge would happen on that day. He even said so on his podcast. He's up to eyeballs in this hot mess.
Mother Jones obtained leaked audio of Bannon telling a group of associates on October 31, 2020, that Trump had a plan to declare victory on election night—even if he was losing. That's so Trumpian. It falls in line with the former President admitting that he calls polls fake if they aren't favorable for him. "If it's bad, I say it's fake. If it's good, I say that's the most accurate poll ever," he said last year.
Via Mother Jones:
Trump knew that the slow counting of Democratic-leaning mail-in ballots meant the returns would show early leads for him in key states. His "strategy" was to use this fact to assert that he had won, while claiming that the inevitable shifts in vote totals toward Joe Biden must be the result of fraud, Bannon explained.
"What Trump's gonna do, is just declare victory. Right?" Bannon can be heard saying in the audio. "He's gonna declare victory. But that doesn't mean he's a winner."
"As it sits here today," Bannon said later, describing a scenario in which Trump held an early lead in key swing states, "at 10 or 11 o'clock Trump's gonna walk in the Oval, tweet out, 'I'm the winner. Game over. Suck on that.'"
No wonder Bannon doesn't want to testify. It feels like everyone in Trump's inner circle seemed to be part of his attempted coup. It's almost as if the Republican Party is OK with authoritarianism. It doesn't work that way. You don't lose an election, declare yourself the winner, then get reelected.