House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has added her name to a growing list of Democrats to denounce Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump’s chief strategist, as a “white supremacist”—a label she repeatedly used on Thursday to criticize Bannon’s recent appointment to the National Security Council.
“What’s making America less safe is to have a white supremacist named to the National Security Council as a permanent member, while the chairman of the Joint Chiefs and the Director of National Intelligence are told, ‘Don’t call us—we’ll call you,'” Pelosi said during her weekly press conference.
“It’s a stunning thing that a white supremacist would be a permanent member of the National Security Council,” she continued.
President Trump’s decision to grant Bannon a permanent seat at the National Security Council, a role that will provide the former Breitbart CEO access to the most sensitive pieces of government information, has sparked an outcry of opposition from those protesting his deep roots to the alt-right community and record of spreading Islamophobia.
Putting Steve Bannon, an extreme right-wing operative, on the National Security Council is dangerous and he should be removed.
— Bernie Sanders (@BernieSanders) January 31, 2017
This is stone cold crazy. After a week of crazy. Who needs military advice or intell to make policy on ISIL, Syria, Afghanistan, DPRK? https://t.co/Mmyc139w3M
— Susan Rice (@AmbassadorRice) January 29, 2017
The increased alarm also comes amid outrage over some of Trump’s latest policy announcements, including an executive order temporarily stopping all refugee resettlement and barring immigrants from seven Muslim-majority countries. Bannon, along with White House adviser Stephen Miller, reportedly helped write the executive order.
The Trump administration is also reportedly considering restructuring a counterterrorism program to no longer include a focus on white supremacists by instead concentrating its efforts solely on Islam.