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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

Report: Climate change is an "emerging threat" to U.S. economic stability

A firefighter watches an airplane drop fire retardant ahead of the Alisal fire near Goleta on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021. Photo: Luis Sinco, Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

A top U.S. financial coordinating organization took several steps on Thursday to manage the growing risks that climate change poses to the U.S. financial system.

Why it matters: While the Biden administration has been taking an all-of-government approach to climate change, like factoring climate risk into planning at the Treasury Department, today's moves by the politically independent Financial Stability Oversight Council (FSOC) carry significant weight.

48 mins ago - World

"I assume full responsibility," Duterte says of drug war

Rodrigo Duterte in 2017. Photo: Linus Escandor II/AFP via Getty Images

Philippines President Rodrigo Duterte said Thursday that he assumes full responsibility for a violent war on drugs that has killed thousands of people, Reuters reported.

Why it matters: Last month the International Criminal Court (ICC) formally authorized an investigation into alleged crimes against humanity during Duterte's war on drugs.

CDC approves boosters for Moderna and J&J and mix-and-match

Boxes containing vials of the Janssen COVID-19 vaccine. Photo: Jon Cherry/Getty Images

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's independent advisory panel voted unanimously to recommend booster doses of Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccine and allow people to mix-and-match doses.

The big picture: The agency aligns with the Food and Drug Administration authorization Wednesday night which said people could switch to whichever vaccine they wanted for their booster shot.