Last updated on January 25, 2021 3:34 pm
Andrew Buncombe Washington DC 1 day ago
On Monday, a single article of impeachment is set to be transferred from the House of Representatives to the Senate, where members of the upper chamber will next month consider Mr Trump’s fate. If Mr Trump, who is the only president to have been impeached twice, is convicted in the Senate, he could also be barred from ever running for federal office again.
Over the weekend it was reported Mr Trump, now ensconced at his estate in Florida, has been talking to advisers about establishing a third party, that could be called the Patriot Party, or perhaps the Make America Great Again Party, borrowing from his campaign slogan.
At the same time, figures such as Fox News anchor Sean Hannity, unelected but with huge influence among many conservatives, in effect warned Republican senate leader Mitch McConnell he would face a primary challenger if he voted to convict Mr Trump.
While three presidents have been impeached by the House – Andrew Johnson, Bill Clinton and Donald Trump – none have been convicted by the Senate. The Senate is due to start hearing the case on the week beginning February 8.
The Washington Post said Mr Trump, operating out of Mar-a-Lago, had told staff to investigate setting up a third party, perhaps named the Patriot Party, to challenge the 10 Republican members of the House who voted to impeach him earlier this month.
The paper said in recent weeks, the former president had entertained the idea of creating a third party “and instructed his aides to prepare election challenges to lawmakers who crossed him in the final weeks in office”.