Excerpts from a new book by Michael Wolff on the Trump White House are causing a stir because of scathing statements about key members of Team Trump by the formerly trusted advisor to the president, Steve Bannon. In the excerpts quoted by The Guardian, Bannon also makes some eyebrow-raising comments about how special counsel Robert Mueller is going to finally get to Trump.
"You realize where this is going," Wolff quotes Bannon as saying. "This is all about money laundering. Mueller chose [senior prosecutor Andrew] Weissmannfirst and he is a money-laundering guy. Their path to f***ing Trump goes right through Paul Manafort, Don Jr and Jared Kushner … It's as plain as a hair on your face. It goes through Deutsche Bank and all the Kushner sh**. The Kushner sh** is greasy. They’re going to go right through that. They’re going to roll those two guys up and say play me or trade me."
The White House, Bannon said, is failing to recognize what's coming down. "They’re sitting on a beach trying to stop a Category Five," he said.
Bannon's comments about Deutsche Bank is a reference to prosecutors recently turning their attention to bank records of the Kushner family real estate business, to which the bank "has lent hundreds of millions of dollars," The New York Times reported in December. Kushner was CEO of the company until January, at which point he stepped down and sold off some of his stake.
"The family businesses include many legal entities," the Times notes. "It is not clear which records were sought by prosecutors, what they are seeking to learn from them or to what degree, if any, they directly involve Mr. Kushner."
Along with reportedly blasting "Javanka" (Jared and Ivanka, his wife) repeatedly in the book, Bannon also slammed Donald Trump Jr. and Manafort for their "treasonous" decision to meet with Russian sources at Trump Tower.
"The three senior guys in the campaign thought it was a good idea to meet with a foreign government inside Trump Tower in the conference room on the 25th floor – with no lawyers. They didn’t have any lawyers," Wolff quotes Bannon as saying. "Even if you thought that this was not treasonous, or unpatriotic, or bad sh**, and I happen to think it’s all of that, you should have called the FBI immediately."
Soon after the Guardian published excerpts of Bannon's comments in the new book, President Trump responded with a blistering disavowal of his former advisor, putting to rest any notion that Bannon still in any way represents Trumpism: