Former White House strategist Steve Bannon argued that Catholic bishops in the United States only support undocumented immigrants because they need them to fill the pews.
In an interview with CBS News’ Charlie Rose, Bannon, who is Catholic, criticized bishops’ support for recipients of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival program, which President Trump recently moved to end in six months.
“They need illegal aliens,” Bannon, who is Catholic, told CBS News’ Charlie Rose. “They need illegal aliens to fill the churches. That’s—it’s obvious on the face of it.”
A number of prominent bishops voiced their opposition to the Trump Administration’s move to end DACA. “To all Dreamers, please know that the Catholic Church loves you, welcomes you, and will fight to protect your rights and your dignity,” Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York wwrote on Twitter. Cardinal Daniel N. DiNardo of Galveston-Houston, president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, issued a statement on behalf of the conference calling the decision “reprehensible.”
The interview is Bannon’s first televised one since he left the White House in August, following months of reported controversy with his West Wing colleagues. After he left the White House, Bannon resumed his position as Chairman of Breitbart News.
However, he told Rose he and Trump are still on good terms, and he is prepared to fight for his legislative agenda.
“I’m going to be his wing man outside for the entire time,” he said. “Our purpose is to support Donald Trump.”