On Thursday morning, former White House chief strategist Steve Bannon suggested in a video posted on Twitter, Facebook and YouTube that Dr Anthony Fauci and FBI Director Christopher Wray be beheaded. Twitter permanently suspended Bannon’s account while Facebook and YouTube removed his video citing their policy against inciting violence.
In the video, Bannon went on to falsely claim that President Donald Trump had won the re-election, despite the counting of votes still being carried out in several key states and the election being too close to call. Bannon said that he should fire both Fauci and Wray in his second term.
“I’d put their heads on pikes. Right. I’d put them at the two corners of the White House as a warning to federal bureaucrats. You either get with the program or you are gone,” Bannon added. The violent comments came during a live stream of Bannon’s War Room: Pandemic online show.
After this incident, attorney William Burck, representing Bannon in a criminal fraud case, moved the court to withdraw his representation. Burck asked that the hearing scheduled for Monday be postponed until Bannon finds a new lawyer.
Burck is a highly regarded Republican attorney who served in the George W Bush administration. He had represented Bannon during former Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation into Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election.
Bannon’s comments came as other supporters of President Trump also used violent and militaristic rhetoric to back Trump’s baseless claims of a rigged election and to condemn his perceived political opponents.