Listen to Angelo Carusone explain the impact Steve Bannon's absence will have on the conservative media echo chamber

Carusone: “They're a chorus without a conductor right now”

Listen to Angelo Carusone explain the impact Steve Bannon's absence will have on the conservative media echo chamber

media matters president angelo carusone with slight smile staring at camera in button up shirt and sweater
Audio file

Citation From the June 6, 2024, edition of Sirius XM's The Dean Obeidallah Show

DEAN OBEIDALLAH (HOST): Let's talk about something interesting.

Steve Bannon is now ordered to report to jail on July 1st. By the way, the judge, Carl Nichols, was appointed by, wait for it, Donald Trump. And he's the one. So he and it's very fair. I mean, he's been staying at his jail for 2 years.

He could have served these 4 months a long time ago. But the timing of this is very interesting. It's July, August, September, October. That's the entire election cycle here left. How important -- because I don't know -- I see sometimes it gets picked up, what Steve Bannon's talking about. How much you're following and how important is Steve Bannon in the MAGA ecosystem, and how much of an impact could this have on the election?

ANGELO CARUSONE (MEDIA MATTERS FOR AMERICA PRESIDENT): I think that like, I would hate to, like, hype some of these guys up because that's obviously their intention.

What's significant about Bannon is is if you just take it, the context of what's happening in the larger right-wing media space, is that they've sort of lost -- they're a chorus without a conductor right now.

And they've been, like, they've been operating that way for quite some time.

There's no center of gravity. Fox just doesn't have the same influence. Hannity isn't at the perch that he was at. Talk radio is increasingly atomized. Like, there just isn't a real clear player.

And the effect of that is that you have a lot of either competing narratives or competing stories, or contradictory stories. And what's always given and traditionally given the right wing power is that they function as an echo chamber.

So you sort of you get a narrative, and then you reverberate that through all the different media apparatus'. So imagine an environment where you have a lot of confusion or fog or maybe a like a little bit of hesitancy to be a vanguard.

Tucker Carlson played that role, and I'm sure we'll talk about that with some of the Fauci stuff because he was big on sort of driving those narratives.

But if you have fog and you don't have somebody to say, "No. It's this direction. We have to go this direction." You have a whole bunch of people sort of walking off into the fog.

And what Bannon does is that he's one of the few people left in the right-wing media that tells a story that is cohesive and coherent.

I know and I say that because most of what they say is not coherent. It's not right. It's going somewhere.

But it tells a coherent story about what's happening in the right in the -- in the landscape, what Democrats are doing, and, importantly, what Republicans and, by extension, MAGA World has to do to respond to that, and that coherence then filters down.

You sort of see elected officials picking up on that. "Oh, yeah. You know what? I should start to make this argument. Oh, I should get involved in Project 2025. You're right. We do need to have a transition project. We do need to go all the way out there on reproductive health and sort of go even further on abortion and immigration."

So I guess the bottom line is that he's kind of like a lighthouse. 


It will be felt day to day. You know, you won't see it in the moment, but watch in a month from now when there's a development, especially maybe even after a debate or another development or a big scandal or story.

Just look and see if the you know, a day or two later, if the right-wing media feels a little less logical and confused in terms of how to respond. And that will be the the penumbra. That will be the thing you feel.

And it will be like Bannon not saying, "That's the marker."  And somebody's got to do that, by the way.