President Trump reportedly wants to create a third party once he leaves office.
According to a report Tuesday evening in the Wall Street Journal, citing “people familiar with the matter,” Mr. Trump has discussed creating a “Patriot Party.”
The discussions have happened with “several aides and other people close to him,” the Journal reported.
According to numerous polls in recent years, Mr. Trump has a significant base of support among people who had been either politically inactive or independents, and thus have little institutional loyalty to the GOP.
In recent months especially, Mr. Trump has feuded with Republican lawmakers in Washington, especially Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, accusing them of betrayal and calling them part of the Washington “swamp.”
According to the Journal, it’s not clear whether Mr. Trump was merely musing aloud or would be willing to put in the kind of time and investment that building a political party takes.
Historically, third parties have done poorly in elections — among many other things, the U.S. single-district and first-past-the-post legislative elections discourage their success.
However, they even now often attract enough support to tilt a race, particularly when almost all their supporters had been members of one of the two major parties.