Chief White House strategist Stephen Bannon said the media should be "ashamed" of itself and "keep its mouth shut" after failing to predict President Donald Trump's 2016 election win.
"The media should be embarrassed and humiliated and keep its mouth shut and just listen for a while," Bannon told The New York Times during a Jan. 25 phone call. "I want you to quote this. The media here is the opposition party. They don't understand this country. They still do not understand why Donald Trump is the president of the United States."
Bannon went on to tell the newspaper it "should be absolutely ashamed and humiliated" for getting the election results "100 percent wrong."
"The elite media got it dead wrong" and has "no power," he added, calling Trump's landslide electoral win over Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton "a humiliating defeat that [the media] will never wash away, that will always be there."
In Trump's first days in office, he and his administration have railed against the media, frequently calling mainstream outlets biased and clashing with them over facts.
"I have a running war with the media," Trump said during a speech at the CIA headquarters on Jan. 21, before referring to a disagreement he and his team have had with the media regarding the size of his inaugural crowd, according to CBS News. "They are among the most dishonest human beings on Earth ... We had a massive field of people [at the inauguration]. You saw them. Packed. I get up this morning, I turn on one of the networks, and they show an empty field."
In that speech, Trump went on to say he points out problems he has with the media because he "love[s] honesty" and "honest reporting."
Bannon told The New York Times that the "war" on the mainstream media will continue as long as it continues to exhibit "zero integrity, zero intelligence and no hard work."
"You're the opposition party," Bannon added. "Not the Democratic Party. You're the opposition party. The media's the opposition party."
Sources: The New York Times, CBS News / Photo credit: DFID - UK Department for International Development/Flickr