Friday, November 18, 2016
Cleaver: Bannon appointment undermines Trump's call to be a president for all
As we watch President-elect Donald Trump and Vice President-elect Mike Pence begin their selection process of the next White House administration, one can only hope that the future cabinet is a representation of the interest and benefits of all Americans.
I must admit, I began to worry about that future the moment I heard President-elect Trump had appointed Stephen Bannon as White House Chief Strategist. Stephen Bannon’s ties to the White Nationalist movement have been noted and well documented. Bannon repeatedly pushed stories, while at the head of Breitbart News, that promoted anti-Semitism, xenophobia and racism. Reports also proclaim Bannon praised the alt-right as the “smarter version of old school racist skinheads.” Surely, this is not who Americans want as top advisor to the President.
I joined nearly 170 U.S. Representatives in writing a letter to President-elect Trump encouraging him to reconsider his appointment of Stephen Bannon. I strongly oppose this appointment as do many of my constituents in Missouri’s 5th District who called our office and voiced their disapproval. This appointment not only undermines Mr. Trump’s call to be the president for all, it sets an overall discriminatory tone for millions of Americans.
I hope President-elect Trump listens to the American people and is truly sincere about bridging the racial and ethnic divide that is currently brewing in America. No matter how rich, or how big of a media star, or how many people bow down to you, the manner in which you treat fellow human beings, in due course, defines who you really are.