That Time Steve Bannon Accused the Clintons of Corruption and Money Laundering

“They are grifters.”

Back in the summer of 2016, Steve Bannon interviewed Peter Schweizer on Bannon’s Breitbart News radio show. The two discussed Clinton Cash, the 2015 book that Schweizer wrote about Bill and Hillary Clinton’s foreign financial entanglements. Bannon’s takeaway was simple. The Clintons, he insisted, are corrupt. “The Clinton have sold out their own people for cold cash,” Bannon said. “They are grifters.” He added, baselessly, that the former first couple was running a “money laundering operation.” (Bannon would go on to run the Trump campaign and briefly serve in the Trump White House.)

Fast forward to 2020: Bannon, along with three other individuals, has been charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy to commit wire fraud relating to an effort to build a donor-funded wall on the US-Mexico border. According to US Attorney Audrey Strauss, Bannon and the other defendants “defrauded hundreds of thousands of donors, capitalizing on their interest in funding a border wall to raise millions of dollars, under the false pretense that all of that money would be spent on construction.”

During the 2016 radio broadcast, Bannon asserted that the Clintons had exploited progressive causes—global warming, environmental issues, human trafficking—and “monetized it on a global scale.” Though Bannon’s claims were baseless, the hypocrisy is clear. He’s now been charged with exploiting anti-immigrant hysteria in an effort to defraud right-wing donors.

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. It's our first time asking for an outpouring of support since screams of FAKE NEWS and so much of what Trump stood for made everything we do so visceral. Like most newsrooms, we face incredibly hard budget realities, and it's unnerving needing to raise big money when traffic is down.

So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

"It's that we're screwed with or without him if we can't show the public that what we do matters for the long term," writes Mother Jones CEO Monika Bauerlein as she kicks off our drive to raise $350,000 in donations from readers by July 17.

This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

payment methods

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our free newsletter

Subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily to have our top stories delivered directly to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate