Trump former strategist Steve Bannon addresses France's far-right party congress

Trump former strategist Steve Bannon addresses France's far-right party congress

"They could never have believed that the Americans had finally voted in their own interests", Bannon told the crowd in Lille, referring to Donald Trump's shock victory on Election Day.

Former White House strategist Steve Bannon is considering buying an established media brand such as the struggling Newsweek. "Let them call you xenophobes. Let them call you nativists", The Post reported. "Wear it as a badge of honor", he declared.

Bannon has already spoken in Zurich, Switzerland at an event organized by a conservative publication, and on Saturday headlined the annual conference for France's National Front.

"Let them call you racist", he told the crowd. "And history is on our side".

Bannon was himself a high-profile departure from the White House last August and was written off by Trump earlier this year, who named him "sloppy Steve", following the publication in January of incendiary comments attributed to him.

Head of the far-right National Front party Marine Le Pen attends a session of questions to the government at the French National Assembly in Paris on March 6, 2018.

Steve Bannon, since getting knocked from his perch atop the populist movement propelling President Donald Trump that he claims to have architected, has packed up and taken his bluster to Europe.

Bannon has publicly praised Marechal-Le Pen in the past, and she galvanized the crowd at a recent convention of US conservatives.

Hong Kong goes to polls in crunch vote for democrats
Hong Kong goes to polls in crunch vote for democrats

The weekend congress is expected to erase one persistent problem for Le Pen - her unpredictable, bombastic father - by eliminating his title of honorary president-for-life from party statutes.

Bannon's appearance at the National Front congress comes as Le Pen aims to revive the party, nine months after she was defeated by centrist Emmanuel Macron in the presidential election. The new name, to be announced tomorrow, is meant to distance the party from the toxic aura that it earned under her father, who handed her the leadership in 2011.

Le Pen, the only candidate for National Front president, says the changes amount to a "cultural revolution" so the reshaped party can "implant itself, create alliances and govern".

"She is not simply a rising star on the right in France".

The party canvassed 51,000 members a year ago about the name change proposal and on Saturday it emerged just 52 per cent had voted in favour among the 30,000 who responded.

Bannon met Marion, who temporarily withdrew from politics after her aunt's presidential election defeat last May, at the CPAC conservative conference in Maryland last month, where he said she was "absolutely electrifying". The National Front today has changed in nature. It won more seats in the European Parliament than any other French party in 2014.

Recent polling showed that 55% of respondents don't want Le Pen to run in the next election.

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