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Susan Walsh / AP

There'll be no pivots, no moderation of any sort so long as Steve Bannon remains in President Trump's White House. That's the message Trump's chief strategist delivered Thursday in a rare public appearance at CPAC alongside chief of staff Reince Priebus.

What we learned: Bannon has softened not one bit since entering the White House. If anything he's more committed to economic nationalism, more hostile to the media, and more determined to protect the President from moderating forces in the Republican Party.

The most important things Bannon said:

  • On priorities: He divides the Administration's priorities into three lines of work (all have a populist nationalist bent): 1. "National security and sovereignty"; 2. "Economic nationalism"; 3. "Deconstruction of the administrative state."
  • On trade: "One of the most pivotal moments in modern American history was his immediate withdrawal from TPP [the Trans-Pacific Partnership)."
  • On the media: He framed the "corporatist globalist media" as hostile to the national interest (the same framing Trump is using.)
  • His most extraordinary quote: "If you think they're [the media] going to give you your country back without a fight you are sadly mistaken."

Why this matters: Republican leaders hope the harsh realities of governing force Trump closer to establishment positions on trade and immigration. They also wish he'd tone down his attacks on the media. Bannon is the guy telling Trump that he can — and must — remain the same guy inside the White House as he was on the campaign trail.

Moderation inside the Trump White House? So long as Bannon's there, don't bet on it.

Go deeper

Felix Salmon, author of Capital
1 hour ago - Technology

Facebook's scandals have been great for shareholders

Expand chart
Data: YCharts; Chart: Axios

Facebook has been embroiled in scandal for the past five years, and while the specific allegations change over time, a central theme is constant. Given the choice between commercial and moral imperatives, Facebook always seems to choose the option that is best for the share price.

Why it matters: Facebook's stock chart supports that narrative. Since the 2016 scandals alleging that the social network was infiltrated by foreign actors trying to influence the outcome of democratic elections, Facebook's revenues — and its stock — have been soaring.

Biden to tap telecom trio for NTIA, FCC posts

Jessica Rosenworcel. Photo: Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call

President Joe Biden on Tuesday is expected to name Alan Davidson as head of the telecom arm of the Commerce Department, Jessica Rosenworcel as chairwoman of the Federal Communications Commission and Gigi Sohn as a commissioner at the FCC, according to a person familiar with the process.

Why it matters: Internet availability and affordability has been a key policy priority for the White House, but the administration lagged in tapping people for the agency posts that oversee the issues.

3 hours ago - Technology

Facebook seeks fountain of youth

Data: Piper Sandler Taking Stock With Teens Study; Chart: Axios Visuals

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Monday said that the company is pivoting its strategy to focus on young adults, following reports that teens have fled its apps.

Why it matters: A series of stories based on leaked whistleblower documents suggest the company sees the aging of its user base as an existential threat to its business.