Donald Trump is reportedly mulling starting a new party with the goal of continuing to influence the White House after his departure, sources close to the matter told The Wall Street Journal on Wednesday.
According to the sources, the name of the party will be the "Patriot Party."
The Journal explained that third parties have historically done more harm than good in that they detract voters from mainstream parties but do not gather enough to make it very far in elections. Trump's potential party could pull Republican voters away, paving the way for a challenge to current GOP leadership.
On Tuesday, US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, Trump's longtime stronghold support in the Senate, accused the president of provoking the January 6 riots.
In a speech on the Senate floor, McConnell stated, "The mob was fed lies. They were provoked by the president."
Trump, whose impeachment charge is "incitement of insurrection," last week relinquished any responsibility for his supporters' attempted takeover of the US Capitol.
Senate Democratic Whip Chuck Schumer, now slated to become Senate majority leader, said in his Senate speech that Trump "is a threat to our constitutional order whether he is in or out of office." Schumer promised that if Trump is successfully convicted in his impeachment trials, the Senate would then vote to bar him from ever running for president.
In contrast, recent polls show that run-of-the-mill GOP voters still hold Trump in high regard, according to WSJ.
A Reuters/Ipsos poll conducted on January 9 showed that 57% of Americans, mostly Democrats, wanted Trump immediately removed from office after the Capitol riots. Republicans were much more supportive of him serving out his term until January 20, when President-elect Joe Biden's inauguration is due to take place.
US President Mike Pence said he would attend Biden's inauguration, a senior official announced last Saturday.
Normally Trump and Pence's schedules are released at night. VP's office issues his early today, confirming he's going to Biden's inauguration and not Trump's farewell ceremony tomorrow. https://t.co/6qeO8pwfeB— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) January 19, 2021
Trump has established a huge base of supporters over the course of his presidency, some of whom were not heavily involved in politics before his presidential campaign, WSJ explained.
It remains unclear if Trump will actually move forward with his plans to launch a new party.