The feud between President Donald Trump and former strategist and head of Breitbart Steve Bannon reached a fever pitch on Wednesday after an excerpt of an upcoming book showed the former White House strategist bashing Trump.
However, while Trump responded to the book—in which Bannon called a meeting in Trump Tower between top Trump campaign officials and a Russian lawyer “treasonous” and “unpatriotic”——by saying Bannon had “lost his mind,” it appears the former strategist is already in damage control mode.
“The president is a great man,” he said on his Sirius XM radio show on Wednesday night, according to the Washington Post. “You know I support him day in and day out.”
“Steve Bannon has nothing to do with me or my Presidency. When he was fired, he not only lost his job, he lost his mind,” Trump’s statement on Wednesday read. “Steve was a staffer who worked for me after I had already won the nomination by defeating seventeen candidates, often described as the most talented field ever assembled in the Republican party.”
The book Bannon was quoted in, Fire & Fury: Inside The Trump White House, set off an explosive series of statements from the president on Wednesday afternoon. Besides saying that his former staffer had “lost his mind,” Trump’s lawyers sent a cease-and-desist letter to the book’s publisher demanding publication be halted. The former strategist also received one, saying he violated a non-disclosure agreement.
In the cease-and-desist, Trump lawyers demanded Bannon make no further disparaging remarks about the president.
“You have breached the Agreement by, among other things, communicating with author Michael Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company, disclosing Confidential Information to Mr. Wolff, and making disparaging statements and in some cases outright defamatory statements to Mr. Wolff about Mr. Trump, his family members, and the Company,” read the letter from lawyer Charles Harder.
On Thursday, Trump seemed to take Bannon’s assertion that he was a “great man” as an acceptable apology.
— Pat Ward (@WardDPatrick) January 4, 2018
When asked by reporters if Bannon “betrayed” him, Trump referenced his former strategist’s comments on the Sirius radio show.
“I don’t know, he called me a great man last night so, you know he obviously changed his tune pretty quick,” Trump said.
Whether that’s the beginning of the end of this feud, or the end of the beginning, is yet to be seen.