Live from Music Row Wednesday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – host Leahy welcomed Tennessee Star National Correspondent Neil W. McCabe to the newsmakers line.
During the third hour, McCabe weighed in on the Steve Bannon event Monday night in New York City where he began his Plot to Steal 2020 tour which educates Trump supporters, Republicans, and conservatives about how the Democrats plan to steal the election from Trump.
Leahy: Joining us now on our newsmaker line our Washington correspondent. The original investigative journalist, my good friend, and my colleague from Breitbart days Neil W. McCabe. How are you?
McCabe: Michael, good to be with you.
Leahy: Neil, you have just been doing all sorts of very interesting investigative reporting. You were also on Monday evening in the studio in New York City with Steve Bannon and the owner of our affiliate in Virginia. The Virginia Star radio host John Fredericks.
McCabe: The great John Fredericks.
Leahy: Absolutely the great John Fredericks. I’m going to ask you a question about those two guys in a second. Bannon is going on this tour of how Democrats plan to steal the election. What was that like on Monday night in New York City?
McCabe: That was the New York City Young Republicans Club. It was held at the National Women’s Republican Club which has a wonderful room that overlooks St. Patrick’s Cathedral. There’s a nice little balcony there. Bannon was absolutely on fire. He was dealing as they say. He was throwing lead downrange.
And Bannon was making the point that the transition is the fight after the election that people have to take seriously because the Democrats are gearing up to challenge the election in the courts. And to challenge the election on Capitol Hill. And to challenge the election in the streets. And so Republicans who think it’s over on November 3 are wrong.
Leahy: Yes. and you and I have talked about our friend Steve Bannon. He’s the guy that hired me at Breitbart in 2012. It’s probably one of the leading intellectuals in the country from a conservative perspective and a populous perspective. We must mention of course that he was indicted on charges by the political Southern District of New York about a month and a half ago. Just give us his analysis of those charges. And what is going to happen with them?
McCabe: Well I think what Steve would tell you is that he was hired by We Build the Wall to bring media and political acumen, which he did. He was supposed to bring them publicity. Which he did in the mainstream media. You and I are both aware that there is an echo chamber in conservative media.
And it’s very rare when stories break out of that conservative echo chamber into the mainstream media where its so powerful a story that the CNN’s and The Washington Post and The New York Times actually have to cover it. We build the Wall got that kind of coverage. Not just on HBO or The New York Times but when I was down there covering We Build the Wall in El Paso for One American News, CBS News Morning Show was going live from the wall.
That was all Bannon. He would say I was paid as a contractor. I believe he was on the board, but he didn’t have signature authority. And so everything that he did was approved by the board. And so basically Steve Bannon was indicted for being Steve Bannon.
And I think they were concerned that he was going to take over the Trump campaign and they wanted to sort of sideline him the same way the left sidelined Paul Manafort four years ago. What the Left didn’t realize is that by not knocking out Manafort with that forged ledger from Ukraine, Bannon took over the Trump campaign which is probably why Trump is in the White House.
Leahy: And Bannon has basically thumbed his nose at the political prosecution of the Southern District of New York. By the way, one of the prosecutors there is James Comey’s daughter as I’m sure you know.
McCabe: Oh yes.
Leahy: Just a coincidence.
Carmichael: Is this the state of New York or federal.
Leahy: Federal. The Southern District Court of New York.
Carmichael: So it’s federal.
McCabe: It’s Manhattan.
Carmichael: But it’s still federal.
McCabe: It is federal. That is correct.
Carmichael: So it’s under Barr.
Leahy: Neil let’s talk about that for a moment. Crom, you ask a good question. Crom says how can the Southern District of New York’s U.S. attorney there file this allegation and indictment of Bannon and the We Build the Wall guys without Barr being involved or knowing about it? Tell us a little bit about this story because it’s quite interesting.
McCabe: I think the story is the Southern District of New York which considers itself a power in and of itself. And if you look at how this thing was done the secretary of state in Florida where We Build the Wall is based, they regulate charities in their state and they went ahead and they demanded all the documents and everything like that from Brian Kolfage who runs We Build the Wall and such.
They then delivered it to the Southern District of New York rather than doing it in Florida. Because the Florida U.S. attorney’s offices aren’t as independent. Then the Southern District of New York handed the investigation to the post office.
Leahy: Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa. Wait a minute. Why did the Southern District of New York hand a criminal federal investigation to the post office of all outlets? Doesn’t this have to go through the FBI?
McCabe: Well, they didn’t want Barr in my view, they didn’t want in Washington, D.C., or even at the FBI to know what is going on.
Leahy: I think that makes sense.
McCabe: So they said oh no. This is a postal fraud investigation. So they had the post office, Florida, and then gave it to the post office. The lawyers at the post office wrote it up as a federal case and then handed it to the Southern District of New York as a baby they found in a basket. And then here we are.
Carmichael: When you called it the sovereign district of New York, is that term of art? Or is that actually a real term?
McCabe: Well the actual title is the southern district of New York because it’s Manhattan.
Carmichael: But the guy reports to Barr.
McCabe: It’s a bureaucracy there. It’s full of civil service guys. It’s a huge office.
McCabe: And what are you going to do? You can’t fire them all. The vast majority of them are civil servants.
Leahy: And Crom is incredulous that the acting us attorney in the Southern District of New York can conduct an investigation and indictment at this level without having to report to the attorney general.
McCabe: Barr is the U.S. attorney. He fired Berman. And then Berman threatened a stink. So then Barr allowed Berman’s assistant to become the acting. And then Berman’s assistant is the same as Berman. Barr backed down. Barr had a chance to take on the Southern District of New York. And he backed down because you can’t be fighting everybody at once. I think Napoleon learned that.
Carmichael: I’ll say this. When Bill Clinton won the presidency he fired all of the U.S. attorneys across the country. I am a big fan of equal treatment under the law.
McCabe: So am I! (Chuckles)
Carmichael: What I’m saying is that there are lots of charities. There are a lot of organizations that have the same tax status as this We Build the Wall organization. And if all of those organizations are going to be held to the same standard as this organization there should be lots of indictments of left-leaning organizations that are equally culpable of some form or textual form of misrepresentation. Which may not stand up in court, but it stands up enough to get the indictment.
Leahy: Last question for you Neil. The sartorial difference between John Fredericks who wears a suit, a sharp white shirt, and tie everywhere and Steve Bannon who I don’t know looks like he’s been mowing the law right? (Chuckles)
McCabe: He looks like he shopped at the veterans center around the corner. (Laughter)
Leahy: What is that contrast like. That was fun to watch.
McCabe: Somebody told me that Steve Bannon looks like one of these TV movies. He looks like one of the last warlords you have to fight in order to free Willie Nelson from the basement. (Leahy laughs)
Listen to the third hour here:
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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Photo “Steve Bannon” by Gage Skidmore. CC BY-SA 2.0.