He may not have had a lot of choice, as one after another of the festival's celebrity invitees - including Jim Carrey and Judd Apatow - began to bail out in protest, and as New Yorker writers took to Twitter to make their displeasure known.
However, several high-profile guests - including director Judd Apatow, actor Jim Carey, comedian John Mulaney, and comedian Patton Oswalt - said that they would not appear at the festival if it meant sharing a billing with Bannon. "See if Milo Yiannopoulos is free?"
Remnick's comments to staff were tweeted by New Yorker reporter Philip Gourevitch.
The New Yorker has disinvited Steve Bannon from the magazine's upcoming annual festival, after several high-profile celebrities balked at the idea of appearing alongside the man credited with numerous divisive strategies that propelled Donald Trump's presidential campaign. But less than 12 hours after announcing Bannon as a headliner for the October 5-7 festival, Remnick canceled his plan to interview Bannon.
Bannon's planned participation in The New Yorker and The Economist events drew rebukes online, while some who said they had planned to take part said they no longer would. "The point of an interview, a rigorous interview, particularly in a case like this, is to put pressure on the views of the person being questioned".
'But this isn't James Baldwin vs William F Buckley. I've thought this through and talked to colleagues - and I've re-considered.
"I've changed my mind", he added. The New Yorker just needed to ignore Bannon, and not offer him a platform in the first place. I hope the @NewYorker will do the right thing and cancel the Steve Bannon event. This is PT Barnum level horse****.
"But Bannon has already exerted enormous impact on Trump; his rhetoric, ideas, and tactics are evident in much of what this President does and says and intends", he added.
Remnick had sought out Steve Bannon for a podcast interview, according to CNN's Reliable Sources.
David Remnick, editor of The New Yorker, explained his decision in a lengthy statement.
Bannon - who left the White House in August 2017 in the wake of a deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia - blasted the magazine over its "gutless" decision to remove him from the lineup. Writers, staffers and others scheduled to be a part of the event were also speaking out, but the most prominent voices came from the world of comedy.
Under fire, Remnick, who deservedly is one of the country's most respected journalists, figured this out late Monday - sort of - and withdrew the magazine's invitation.