“The president wanted me to know, as well as a handful of others, that the president is a Republican, he is not starting a third party,” Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-ND) said.
By David Isaac, World Israel News
President Donald Trump sent a reassuring message to Republican senators through a former aide that he will not start a third party, Politico reports on Tuesday.
Brian Jack, Trump’s former political director at the White House, quietly delivered the message, the website says.
“The president wanted me to know, as well as a handful of others, that the president is a Republican, he is not starting a third party and that anything he would do politically in the future would be as a Republican,” Sen. Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.) said, recounting the message.
“The Republican Party is still overwhelmingly supportive of this president,” Cramer added.
Politico says the message is also a veiled threat, warning Republicans that Trump is still part of the party “and for many, still the leader of his party.” Republicans who vote for impeachment may have to contend with Trump targeting them for censure or supporting their opponents in their reelection efforts.
“Trump has already threatened his critics in the Senate GOP with primary challengers,” Politico reports.
House Democrats brought the sole impeachment charge of “incitement of insurrection” to the Senate on Monday evening.
They are hoping that strong Republican denunciations of Trump after the Jan. 6 riot will translate into a conviction and a separate vote to bar Trump from holding office again.
However, their hopes for success appear to be dimming as Republicans, either out of reasons of principle or politics, back away from impeachment. It now looks unlikely that 17 Republicans, the number necessary to convict, will support the largely Democratic effort.
“A lot of people made strong statements, and I put myself in the category, of what the president’s role was, particularly right after Jan. 6 happened,” said Sen. Shelley Moore Capito (R-W.Va.), Politico reports.
“And I suppose as time goes on the political considerations begin to weigh in.”
The report made no mention of whether Trump intends to run again but Richard Grenell, the former acting Director of National Intelligence, told Newsmax TV on Saturday that he does.