Screengrab via @eucrite/Twitter

Is Donald Trump’s new campaign chief actually grown-up Success Kid?

Will he be as successful?


Miles Klee

Internet Culture

Published Aug 22, 2016   Updated May 26, 2021, 5:15 am CDT

In the latest Trump campaign shakeup, the Donald elevated a new campaign director: Stephen Bannon.

What do we know about Bannon? He’s “executive chairman of anti-establishment conservative website Brietbart News,” for one. He’s “the most dangerous political operative in America,” for another. He is someone who just kinda shrugs when asked why white nationalists are so attracted to his ideology, for a third. So far, so normal.

But given Bannon’s penchant for wild conspiracy theories, I feel comfortable highlighting one myself. What if—and stay with me here—Bannon is, as Twitter’s @eucrite points out, the emphatic little boy from the Success Kid meme, all grown up and political? 

As with the YouTube video claiming Katy Perry is actually JonBenét Ramsey, you have to admit there are striking similarities at work here. 

Granted, there are some holes in this hypothesis. Most glaringly, Success Kid’s real name is Sammy Griner, and he’s not even 10 years old yet—but hey, there’s a 12-year-old is apparently running Trump’s campaign in Jefferson County, Colorado—whereas Bannon is considered by most reputable sources to be named “Stephen Bannon” and 62 years of age.

Meanwhile, fellow conspiracy enthusiasts have suggested that Bannon is someone else entirely.

But the point remains: If Ted Cruz can be the Zodiac Killer despite his relative youth at the time of those notorious murders, can’t Bannon be adult Success Kid? Yes, he can. In which case, Hillary may want to hurry up and hire Doge for her own campaign. 

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*First Published: Aug 22, 2016, 4:11 pm CDT