Former president Donald Trump has approvingly shared an article on his Truth Social account which argues that he should mount a third-party bid for the presidency if Republicans fail to award him the GOP nomination in the upcoming 2024 election.
On Wednesday, Mr Trump, who last month declared himself a candidate in the 2024 Republican primary, shared an article in the right-wing journal American Greatness on his Truth Social page. The article compares his theoretical third-party run to the 1912 candidacy of Theodore Roosevelt, whose campaign on the “Bull Moose” or “Progressive” party line split the GOP vote and led to William Howard Taft’s defeat at the hands of Woodrow Wilson.
The author of the editorial, Dan Glernter, writes that the inevitable consequence of a Trump third-party bid would be to hand the 2024 election to the Democratic candidate. Mr Glernter suggests that the result would be justifiable as a punishment for the GOP’s rejection of Mr Trump should he lose the party’s nomination to another candidate.
"The RNC can pretend Trump isn’t loved by the base anymore, that he doesn’t have packed rallies everywhere he goes. But I’m not buying it: Talk to Republican voters anywhere outside the Beltway, and it is obvious that he is admired and even loved by those who consider themselves 'ordinary' Americans,” Mr Glernter wrote, adding that he has “no intention of supporting a Republican Party that manifestly contravenes the desires of its voters”.
Recent opinion polls show Mr Trump losing ground among the GOP faithful, with Florida Governor Ron DeSantis emerging as the top choice of most self-identified Republican voters.
Mr Trump has flirted with politics outside the two major parties before. In 2000, he started an exploratory committee with the stated aim of seeking nomination by the Reform Party, the third party which emerged from H Ross Perot’s two independent campaigns in 1992 and 1996. Though, he never seriously sought political office before announcing his candidacy for the GOP nomination in 2015.
He also briefly considered starting his own political party in the waning days of his presidency out of anger at the failure of many Republicans to back his attempt to overturn his 2020 election loss.
In his book Betrayal: The Final Act of the Trump Show, ABC correspondent Jonathan Karl wrote that Mr Trump had actually told Republican National Committee chair Ronna McDaniel that he was “done” with the GOP and was starting his own party.
In response, Ms McDaniel told him: “You cannot do that — if you do, we will lose forever.”
The soon-to-be ex-president replied: “Exactly — you lose forever without me. I don’t care. This is what Republicans deserve for not sticking up for me”.
Mr Trump reportedly withdrew his threat after being told that the RNC would withhold use of the massive email list he’d built during his two campaigns, as well as refuse to pay his legal bills. He later claimed the report of his aborted exit from the GOP was “fake news”.