Trump reassured several hundred loyal supporters who had come to Andrews Air Force Base to bid him farewell: “We’ll see you soon.” But it is still not clear how.
If Trump really intends to return to politics with his party, it could cause a mass exodus from the Republican Party. Even after Trump’s radical supporters storm the Capitol, the former president still has tens of millions of Republicans behind him.
The right-wing TV channel One America News (OAN) – Trump’s favorite since the election instead of Fox News – responded enthusiastically to the plan. OAN still adheres to the theory that Trump has been the victim of widespread electoral fraud.
Thedonald.win, a site for hawkish fans of Trump supporters, has also received strong support for the idea of punishing Republicans for refusing to declare Trump the election victory. One Trump fan said, “We’ll start with the dreaded Patriot party, and don’t let any of these traitors in, and then we’ll destroy the Republican Party.” Another said, “The Republican Party must be completely destroyed.” “We had four years to change the party from within, and it failed.”
It wouldn’t be surprising that Trump himself is seeking revenge, too. He is angry that Mitch McConnell, the leader of the Republicans in the Senate, has shot him down and accused him of even provoking the storming of the Capitol. Trump is known for dealing ruthlessly with people who are unfaithful to him, as one minister after another felt in his government. He already told the reader in his book: “If you do not take revenge, you are a scoundrel.” Think larger.
Trump is expected to want to bring back Steve Bannon, whom he pardoned just before he stepped down, to start a truly populist party that has the same ideas fully as the buildings he put his name on. Bannon was the man behind Trump’s stunning 2016 election victory, but was later fired by the president after a power struggle with Trump’s daughter Ivanka (Bannon described her as stupid as brick).
Bannon could help him set up a kind of Brexit party in which Nigel Farage seriously hampered the British Conservative Party.
Usually, the third parties in the US electoral system have little chance, but it is very likely that Trump and his party will outpace the Republicans. Until then, the question is whether he will get enough votes to return to the White House.
Trump’s plans may primarily be aimed at warning fellow party members in the Senate against trying to use the impeachment measures underway against him to get rid of him permanently. Only 17 Republican senators need to vote with Democrats to convict Trump, after which a simple majority in the Senate can prevent him from running for president. But there is a risk that Trump will retaliate by blowing up the Republican Party, even though he will not have a chance in the White House.
With the ghost of a rival Patriot or Trump’s party, the former president is putting Republicans in his grip. And he may end up blackmailing Republicans to stand behind him if he wants to hit the White House again in four years.