Thursday, 15 Apr 2021

Donald Trump could ‘finish’ Republican party if ex-POTUS forms own political group

Donald Trump's former adviser discusses ongoing popularity

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On Sunday, Mr Trump hinted that he may run for office again in 2024 during a speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC). The CPAC is America’s largest meeting of conservative politicians and activists.

The event usually gives a glimpse into the directions of the Republican party.

Harry Kazianis, senior director for the Center for the National Interest, told Express.co.uk that if Mr Trump were to form his own political group it could “finish” the Republican party.

He said: “If Trump were to form his own political party the GOP would be finished as a major party for at least several years—if not much longer.

“We have to remember that what Trump did in 2015 and 2016 was successfully pull off a hostile takeover of the Republican party.

“Transforming it from a pro-business, free-trade, low taxes, foreign interventionist platformed party to a fervently populist, more pro-worker, reciprocal trade, realist national security based party—massive changes in just a few years’ time.”

Mr Kazianis explained how if Mr Trump were to leave the Republican party he would take with him a huge chunk of its voters.

The expert said: “If he left the GOP, Trump would take the vast majority of the millions of new voters he brought into the party, essentially gutting the GOP.

“But also handing the Democrats a major political advantage, as the populist-conservative coalition forged in the GOP needs to stay intact to take on what is growing trend towards progressive policies in the US favoured by younger voters.

“Simply put, Trump and the old guard GOP need each other—now more than ever.”

During his speech last weekend, Mr Trump claimed that he would “beat” the Democrats for a “third time” referring to the false claims that he won the 2020 election.

In his first speech since Democrat Joe Biden became President, Mr Trump also heavily criticised his successor.

The former President claimed that US policy had gone from “America first to America last”.

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He added: “We all knew that the Biden administration was going to be bad.

“But none of us even imagined how just how bad they would be and how far left they would go.”

Since Mr Trump’s exit from the White House and his second impeachment trial, some senior Republicans have distanced themselves from the former President.

Mr Trump rejected the idea that he might start a new political party in his CPAC speech.

The ex-President appeared to acknowledge that leaving the Republican party might cause them to “never win” a future election.

He joked to the crowd: “Wouldn’t that be brilliant? Let’s start a new party so we can divide our vote and never win.”

Mr Trump added: “We have the Republican party. It’s going to unite and be stronger than ever before.”

In his CPAC speech, Mr Trump also repeated his false claims that he lost November’s election to Mr Biden because of electoral fraud.

He said: “Actually you know they just lost The White House.

“But who knows – who knows? I may even decide to beat them for a third time, OK?”

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