Minggu, 21 Februari 2021

Donald Trump staved off impeachment with threat to start his own party, says adviser Jason Miller - The Australian

Donald Trump has held meetings about setting up a new social media site to rival Twitter. Picture: AFP
Donald Trump has held meetings about setting up a new social media site to rival Twitter. Picture: AFP

Donald Trump’s senior adviser says the former US president used the “leverage” of starting his own political party to ensure Republicans did not side with Democrats to convict him in his impeachment trial.

Mr Trump is actively holding meetings about launching his own social media network to rival Twitter, his senior media adviser, Jason Miller, said in an interview with Sky News and The Australian.

In the interview, Mr Miller said the risk of Mr Trump setting up his own political party was both “leverage” and “a reality”.

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“(A third party) is not something he was proactively pursuing. There were no serious conversations that were being had behind the scenes, and the only way he was ever going to even think about that is if he was pushed towards it. But good thing is we have gotten past impeachment — President Trump has been acquitted fully.

“I think the only possible way that there would have been any footsies with the idea of a third party was if there’d been some sort of move towards impeachment or any sort of bigger push, but President Trump is very much committed to the Republican party and he wants to see the party win back the majorities in our legislature.”


In the impeachment trial, US Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell unleashed a tirade against Mr Trump, accusing him of inciting the Capitol Hill riots.

But he voted to acquit him, saying he did not think it was constitutional to convict a former president.

Mr Miller, who served as Mr Trump’s 2020 senior adviser, 2016 senior communications adviser and transition team communications director, said the former president was synonymous with the Republican Party.

“What a lot of folks are starting to realise here in the States is that President Trump is the Republican Party, so he’s not only the current aspect of the party but he’s the future of the party,” he said.

If the 2024 election was next week, Mr Miller said, Mr Trump would run, but he added that “no decision has been made yet”.

Asked about former UN ambassador Nikki Haley’s attack on Mr Trump, and attempted reconciliation, Mr Miller said she could not both attack the former president and “pretend to support” him.

“At this point if you’re attacking Trump, you’re attacking the Republican Party overall”, he said.

Jason Miller walks in the Capitol this month during the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump in the Senate. Picture: AFP
Jason Miller walks in the Capitol this month during the second impeachment trial of Donald Trump in the Senate. Picture: AFP

Mr Miller said Mr Trump was holding meetings about setting up a new social media site to rival Twitter after his account was suspended from the platform.

“There’ve been conversations and meetings already to this point, I think there’s a very good chance President Trump could set up his own social media platform in which case regardless of what the platform is it’s going to be the biggest once he joins it,” he said.

“There’ve already been a number of meetings about joining existing social media platforms and setting up brand new social media platforms.

“There are a couple of existing platforms we are kicking the tyres on to see if it’s something he could go and join.

“Whatever he does, whether it’s a new platform, whether it’s an existing platform, he’s really going to make that in a huge way, keeping in mind he had something in the way 74 million followers when he was on Twitter and folks want to hear what he has to say.”

Despite facing an impeachment trial for inciting violence, Mr Trump will not give up his campaign for election reform, Mr Miller said.

The former president is in Palm Beach, Florida, spending his days playing golf, catching up with friends and enjoying his time with wife Melania and son Barron in the warm weather.

“Speaking with him everyday, he’s chomping at the bit and ready to get back at it,” Mr Miller said.

Investigations Editor

Sharri Markson is an investigations writer based in Sydney. She has previously been The Australian's media editor and The Daily Telegraph's national political editor. Sharri has twice won a Walkley Award and a ...

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2021-02-21 06:15:00Z

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