Former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon suggested on Friday that California may create a “problem” for the United States by trying to secede.
“You are a sanctuary state,” Bannon told the crowd during a speech at a California Republican Party convention, as reported by the Washington Examiner. “If you do not roll this back, 10 or 15 years from now the lords of Silicon Valley and progressive Democrats are going to try to secede from the union.”
Bannon compared California’s controversial relationship with President Donald Trump to the dynamic between South Carolina and the federal government under former President Andrew Jackson, who, before the Civil War, warned that he will send the U.S. Army into the state and deemed hanging states’ rights proponent John C. Calhoun.
“We thought the secession issue was settled 150 years ago,” Bannon said. “And it’s going to be a … problem here in California.”
In resistance of the Trump administration, California became a “sanctuary state” in the beginning of October after Gov. Jerry Brown passed a bill prohibiting law enforcement officers from “asking about immigration status during routine interactions.”
At the time, Brown announced in a statement, “These are uncertain times for undocumented Californians and their families, and this bill strikes a balance that will protect public safety, while bringing a measure of comfort to those families who are now living in fear every day.”
Scrutinizing the move, Bannon stated in his speech that U.S. citizens “should have preference for jobs and economic opportunity,” according to The Sacramento Bee.
In answer to California starting to be a sanctuary state, White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders announced the Trump administration wishes Californians will “push back” on Brown’s “irresponsible” decision.
Bannon also said to critics of his populist worldview, fighting that its policies describe the best way to unite the Republican Party, including the establishment and evangelical Christians.
“Economic nationalism is not what’s going to drive us apart,” Bannon said. “It’s what’s going to bind us together.”
Bannon grouped the executives and employees working Silicon Valley with the “lobbyists, consultants, and corporatists and globalist elites,” assuming they are all part of the political establishment that is destroying the United States.
He claimed that the highly paid people in Silicon Valley “think they get a special deal” by getting “all the benefits of a free society” while leaving it to other Americans to defend their freedoms by serving in the military, the San Francisco Chronicle reported.
According to Bannon, America’s industrial heartland was destroyed because China “gamed” international trade deals that helped “Silicon Valley, Wall Street, Hollywood and Washington, D.C.”