Anti-Discrimination, Muslim Groups Decry Trump's Newly Appointed Chief Strategist

A trio of watchdog groups spoke out about the president-elect's new strategist.

— -- Two anti-discrimination watchdogs and the Council on American-Islamic Relations criticized President-elect Donald Trump's pick for one of his top administration posts.

In an announcement on Sunday, Trump named Breitbart News executive Stephen Bannon as chief strategist and senior counselor to the president.

“I am thrilled to have my very successful team continue with me in leading our country,” Trump said in a statement, calling Bannon and his new chief of staff, Reince Priebus, "highly qualified leaders who worked well together on our campaign and led us to a historic victory.”

“I want to thank President-elect Trump for the opportunity to work with Reince in driving the agenda of the Trump Administration,” Bannon was quoted in the statement. “We had a very successful partnership on the campaign, one that led to victory. We will have that same partnership in working to help President-elect Trump achieve his agenda.”

In a quick response, the Southern Poverty Law Center said Bannon turned his news website into “a white ethno-nationalist propaganda mill,” and called on the President-elect to change his mind.

“Trump should rescind this hire. In his victory speech, Trump said he intended to be president for 'all Americans.' Bannon should go,” the group said in a tweet.

The Anti-Defamation League also spoke out against Bannon.

“It is a sad day when a man who presided over the premier website of the ‘alt-right’ — a loose-knit group of white nationalists and unabashed anti-Semites and racists — is slated to be a senior staff member in the ‘people’s house,'” ADL head Jonathan Greenblatt said in a statement.

"We call on President-elect Trump to appoint and nominate Americans committed to the well-being of all our country's people."

Meanwhile, the Council on American-Islamic Relations accused Bannon of promoting "misogynistic and racist stories targeting women, people of color and immigrants," and called the newly appointed White House chief strategist an "anti-Muslim conspiracy theorist and White nationalist alt-right extremist."

"The appointment of Stephen Bannon as a top Trump administration strategist sends the disturbing message that anti-Muslim conspiracy theories and White nationalist ideology will be welcome in the White House," CAIR’s executive director, Nihad Awad, said in a statement. "We urge President-elect Trump to reconsider this ill-advised appointment if he truly seeks to unite Americans."