Steve Bannon has lost the support of his most prominent backer, conservative billionaire Rebekah Mercer.
Mercer, who typically stays out of the public eye, told the Washington Post on Thursday that she has not spoken to Bannon in months and that she stands behind President Donald Trump as he feuds with his former adviser.
“I support President Trump and the platform upon which he was elected,” Mercer said in the rare statement. “My family and I have not communicated with Steve Bannon in many months and have provided no financial support to his political agenda, nor do we support his recent actions and statements.”
Bannon, who served as Trump’s campaign chairman and then White House chief strategist until August, has frustrated many Republicans since leaving the White House. He particularly annoyed Mercer when he told other conservative donors he could count on her support if he ran for president, the Post reported Wednesday.
Mercer’s criticism also comes amid a raging controversy over a new book by journalist Michael Wolff, “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House,” which features harsh comments from Bannon about the president and his family.
The book has prompted an intense response from the White House and the president himself, with Trump issuing a statement dismissing Bannon’s role in the 2016 election and saying his former strategist “lost his mind.” Press Secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders has since said she is “furious” and “disgusted” about the upcoming book and Trump’s lawyer sent a cease and desist letter to Wolff.
Despite her apparent anger at Bannon and the current controversy, Mercer told the Post she would continue to support Breitbart News, where Bannon still serves as chairman.