Billionaire Gawker-destroyer Peter Thiel has officially joined President-elect Donald Trump’s transition team, according to a news release from the Trump team.
The PayPal founder and Facebook board member supported Trump throughout the presidential race and pledged to donate $1.25 million to his campaign in October.
The pairing makes sense: A president-elect who bucked tradition and refused to give the press access to his schedule or movements once being elected to office, and a billionaire who used his near-limitless resources to bankrupt a news website over a decade-old grudge. Trump, of course, has expressed hostility toward the media throughout his campaign, not just since winning the election on Tuesday.
Thiel also agrees with Trump on his deportation-friendly immigration policy, opposition to free trade agreements and isolationist foreign policy. He also has previously advocated against women getting to vote, discussed plans to start small, government-free island nations and hoped to figure out how to help people live forever.
Thiel will be the main voice for Silicon Valley and the rest of the tech world on the Trump team. Thiel is an investor in Palantir, Reddit and a host of other tech companies, and still sits on Facebook’s board of directors. Most of the tech world, however, has been strongly against Trump even as some of Silicon Valley’s biggest names have defended Thiel’s choice of a candidate.
Joining Thiel on the Trump transition team are Trump’s three adult children, son-in-law Jared Kushner, campaign CEO and former Breitbart chairman Stephen Bannon and Republican National Committee chairman Reince Priebus.
Like Thiel, Bannon has also tried to reshape the American media in a way that suits his worldview. Kushner is the publisher of the New York Observer, which endorsed Trump in the Republican primary.
Vice President-elect Mike Pence will take over the role of transition chair from New Jersey Governor Chris Christie (who put Kushner’s father in jail as U.S. attorney for New Jersey 12 years ago).