Former President Donald Trump has appeared to float the idea of running a third-party campaign if increasingly disgruntled Republican leaders don’t get behind his 2024 run for the presidency.
Trump signaled the possibility by posting an article on Truth Social Wednesday ― “The Coming Split,” by Dan Gelernter, in the right-wing journal American Greatness ― promoting just such an option.
Gelernter believes such a move would torpedo Trump’s chances of winning the White House. But it would also wipe out Republican hopes, which Gelernter argued would be a deserving punishment for rejecting the popular former president.
“Do I think Trump can win as a third-party candidate? No,” he wrote. “Would I vote for him as a third-party candidate? Yes. Because I’m not interested in propping up this corrupt [GOP] gravy-train any longer.”
Gelernter claimed that the “Republican machine has no intention of letting us choose Trump again: He is not a uniparty team player. They’d rather lose an election to the Democrats, their brothers in crime, than win with Trump.”
He asked: “What should we do when a majority of Republicans want Trump, but the Republican Party says we can’t have him? Do we knuckle under and vote for Ron DeSantis because he would be vastly better than any Democrat? I say no, we don’t knuckle under.”
Trump has flirted before with the idea of aligning himself with a third party ― apparently largely out of vindictiveness.
ABC White House correspondent Jonathan Karl wrote in his book “Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show” that Trump once told Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel that he was “done” with the GOP and was starting his own party.
“You cannot do that,” McDaniel reportedly warned him. “If you do, we will lose forever.”
According to Karl, Trump responded: “Exactly — you lose forever without me. I don’t care. This is what Republicans deserve for not sticking up for me.”
Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) last week declared that Trump’s political clout had “diminished.”