Steve Bannon Calls Republican Donors “Morons”

I didn’t say it, Steve Bannon said it. For a number of years I have been pointing out the obvious fact that leftist donors are much smarter when it comes to their political donations than right-of-center donors are—that’s just not even up for debate. The evidence is all around us, especially in Illinois.

But I never used the word “moron.”

For fun, here’s a definition of the word:



1. A person who is considered foolish or stupid.
2. A person of mild mental retardation having a mental age of from 7 to 12 years and generally having communication and social skills enabling some degree of academic or vocational education. The term belongs to a classification system no longer in use and is now considered offensive.
3. A variety of salamander.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

I don’t know anything about salamanders, and I’m sure #2 doesn’t usually come into play (and it’s politically incorrect anyway), so Steve Bannon thinks the big Republican donors are “foolish or stupid.” (With my editor’s permission, I have used the word stupid in an article not long ago, but again, I didn’t call the donors morons.)

Why did Steve Bannon call these wealthy and successful people morons?

Look around you. Inflation. Crime. An insecure southern border. Taxes. Indoctrination instead of education in the schools. Foreign policy that is a disaster (see the Afghanistan withdrawal). High and getting higher energy prices. You don’t even have to be in Illinois—federal government policy is pretty messed up even in those lovely red states.

But in Illinois it’s worse. Much worse. Here we set the standard on lousy tax, cultural, crime, and economic policies.

That reality is despite tens of millions of dollars being spent by Republicans and economic and social conservatives this cycle, and hundreds of millions spent by these very same people over the past several years.

Here’s the transcript from that Bannon War Room podcast where Steve said what he said (you can watch it here starting at the 29:57 mark):

How are we going to turn things around? You gotta win at the polls. You win at the polls. There’s no commercials, there’s no donor money…

Listen, donors are geniuses in their businesses. I know them all—they’re morons when it comes to politics. I’m sorry you guys don’t like that. I have to tell it to your face. You don’t know anything about politics and about the American people.

You’re geniuses in your businesses—that’s why you have cash. I hear donors are backing this guy, donors don’t like this, donors are tired of Trump. Screw the donors. They didn’t like Trump in ’16 and he won. He didn’t get any donor money.

I’ve never said “screw the donors” either.

For what I have said about donors after decades of experience with them, peruse the list of articles here. It is my view that until donors, especially in Illinois, wake up to the simple reality that you can’t do more of the same and expect a different result, things will not change. Unfortunately, donors have walled themselves off from anyone with a better idea (like me). Part of that wall is using gatekeepers who personally benefit from donor largess, and have shut out people and ideas that could actually win governing majorities.

J.B. Pritzker isn’t the only one spending tens of millions of dollars this year. Republican Richard Uihlein is as well. In less than two weeks we’ll see whether Uihlein spent his money wisely or wasted it yet again.

Up next: How much will J.B. Pritzker win by?