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Story highlights

Bannon was removed from the NSC in what the White House said was a planned move

'We gotta work this out,' Trump reportedly told Bannon and Jared Kushner about their increasingly nasty infighting

CNN —  

When Steve Bannon, President Donald Trump’s chief strategist, appeared at the Conservative Political Action Conference in February, he appeared to be at the height of his powers.

Trump had pushed through an executive order banning travel from seven Muslim-majority countries. He had placed Bannon, controversially, on the National Security Council.

Bannon and his world view was ascendant – and he knew it. The administration’s goal was the “deconstruction of the administrative state,” he said at CPAC.

Since then, Bannon has watched his power within the White House steadily shrink, an erosion that culminated this week when he was removed from the NSC and his battles with Trump’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner, went public.

Bannon was removed from the NSC in what the White House claims was a planned move. He was only there to keep an eye on Michael Flynn, the argument went, and with Flynn being forced to resign as national security adviser, Bannon’s job was theoretically, done! (Nota bene: Flynn and Bannon were allies and similarly minded in world view.)

The move, when viewed sans spin, was clearly both a diminution in Bannon’s power and a public rebuke of the high-flying aide by a President who doesn’t like anyone to get more attention than him.

Bannon considered resigning following the high-profile dressing down, according to Politico. He decided against that course of action – reportedly at the behest of GOP mega-donor Rebekah Mercer, a longtime ally – but his tough week wasn’t done.

Gathered at Mar-a-Lago, Trump’s southern White House, Bannon argued against a strike against Syria in retaliation for the chemical attack against its own people early this week, according to New York magazine’s Gabriel Sherman. Trump ordered the strike anyway.

Bannon’s week ended with a forced sit-down with Kushner, Ivanka Trump’s husband and the Trump adviser now seemingly on the rise in the eyes of the President. (Kushner is functioning as a sort of secretary of everything these days.)

“We gotta work this out,” Trump reportedly told Bannon and Kushner about their increasingly nasty infighting.

The problem for Bannon is that Kushner is family and he’s not. And we all know how a fight between family and not-family turns out – and it’s not good for the Bannon figure.

Steve Bannon, for finding yourself in a fight you can’t win, you had the Worst Week in Washington. Congrats, or something.