After years as a registered Republican, the outspoken real estate mogul has filed paperwork to become an unaffiliated voter in his home state of New York.
Trump made the change official Thursday, a move prompted by his stated interest in mounting a third-party presidential run in 2012.
"Mr. Trump has said for almost a year that if he is not satisfied with who the Republican candidate is, he may elect to run as an independent," spokesman Michael Cohen said Friday. "This change in party affiliation certainly preserves his right to do so, after the finale of 'The Apprentice' in May." [Emphasis added]
That was the same reason he gave for pulling out as moderator of a candidates' debate, although having all but two of those candidates refuse to appear with him probably entered into his decision. Still, it's clear that Mr. Trump has ambitions.
And it's clear that he can mount a third-party candidacy. He's wealthy enough to help fund his campaign, and he has plenty of contacts in the business world to help him out. Then there's the growing success of Americans Elect, the non-party party, which is now ballot qualified in six states, including California, and will probably qualify in most, if not all, of the rest. He has a ready-made vehicle which will have an extensive mailing list to assist him further. I'm certain he's aware of that.
This all has to make the Republican stalwarts nervous as hell, which is always a good thing.
Me, I'm back to stocking up on popcorn.
Labels: Election 2012