Trump Planning to Establish the 'Patriot Party' When He Leaves Office, Report Says
Rumors emerge that president seeks to create 3rd political party
President Donald Trump has been in discussions about establishing a new political party – the Patriot Party – after “feuding” with the Republican establishment, according to reports.
The news that Trump is reportedly planning the new formation comes after he told supporters that the "movement we started is just beginning" in his farewell address to the nation on Tuesday.
The president is said to have spoken with aides about the idea, The Wall Street Journal first reported.
It is not known how serious he is in going ahead with the idea, however.
In his Tuesday address, President Trump vowed to be a continued presence on the political stage.
"Now, as I prepare to hand power over to a new administration at Noon on Wednesday, I want you to know that the movement we started is only just beginning," he said.
But his vow to stay a force in politics may not sit well with some establishment Republicans.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) said Tuesday that Trump "provoked" the rioters who stormed the Capitol two weeks ago in his most outright denunciation of the president.
"The mob was fed lies," McConnell said in Senate floor remarks.
"They were provoked by the president and other powerful people."
The dramatic and unprompted intervention by the man who will be Republicans' most senior leader when Trump leaves office came with less than 24 hours of his presidency remaining.
Despite McConnell's gripes, Trump's supporters - 74 million cast their ballot for the president in November - could be an influence in the party's primaries for years to come.
Trump gave a nod to his people Tuesday.
"Together with millions of hardworking patriots across this land, we built the greatest political movement in the history of our country," he said.
According to numerous polls in recent years, 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, Trump has feuded with Republican lawmakers in Washington, especially McConnell, accusing them of betrayal and calling them part of the Washington “swamp.”
According to the Journal, it’s not clear whether the president 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.