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Steve Bannon wanted to infiltrate Facebook before the election

According to leaked emails obtained by BuzzFeed News, Steven Bannon has long been interested in using Facebook’s power to further the Republican agenda. A few days before he joined Donald Trump’s campaign last year, Bannon exchanged emails with a Washington staffer named Chris Gacek about flooding Facebook’s job application pool with people allegiant to Breitbart. Gacek reportedly shared job openings with Bannon. The idea was that the applicants could report back to Bannon and Milo Yiannopoulos “about the job application process over at FB.”

It’s unclear what happened beyond these messages. One of the people included in the email thread said that it seemed difficult for Breitbart to do it “quietly without [Facebook] becoming aware of efforts.” The news comes amid growing awareness of how Facebook’s ad platform is being used as a tool for foreign meddling. Barack Obama, for instance, reportedly took Mark Zuckerberg aside last year to warn him about how Facebook was being used to spread misinformation. Zuckerberg reportedly played down Obama’s warnings.

Whether or not Bannon and Breitbart decided to infiltrate the company, this latest Bannon tidbit does illustrate how important he thought Facebook to be. You can read the full BuzzFeed News write-up here.CGW