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The billionaire appears to be fighting a rearguard action, with most polls suggesting he is trailing his Democratic Party opponent. However, during the course of his forthcoming book, Tuesday’s Child: How America Chooses Its Presidents, Brian Church suggests political pundits would be unwise to write Mr Trump off given his against-the-odds victory over Hillary Clinton in 2016.
And if the thrice-married 74-year-old does, Mr Church reminds readers Mr Trump has floated the idea of running again, even though he is currently prohibited from doing so by the 22nd amendment which limits Presidents to two terms in office.
Mr Church writes: “Triple-Teflon-coated Trump has expressed light-hearted interest in being in office for the men’s football 2026 World Cup, which will be hosted by the United States, Canada and Mexico, the last two not always Trump’s favourite countries.
“Staying past a Constitution-defying second term, ending in January 2025, has been more than a one-off joke for Trump.
If Trump wins and has a successful second term – as defined by himself, so we already know it will be – would he be tempted to go for a third term even though he can’t?
“If Trump wins and has a successful second term – as defined by himself, so we already know it will be – would he be tempted to go for a third term even though he can’t?
“Even if he wanted to, it would be close to impossible for Trump to get the 22nd Amendment repealed in time for him to enjoy a third term.
“The simpler option is to become president for life, and Trump joked about that too when praising Chinese leader Xi Jinping’s remarkable job security and remarking, ‘Maybe we’ll have to give that a shot someday.’
“Just to be clear, that’s also not going to happen.”
A less outlandish possibility would see Mr Trump decide to give it another go in 2024, something former Chief Strategist Steve Bannon has suggested could be a realistic option in the event of a defeat to Mr Biden.
Such is Mr Trump’s popularity with his supporters, he would not necessarily need the support of either major party to do so, Mr Church said.
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He explained: “A sprightly 78 years old by 2024, Trump would be unlikely to win Republican backing again, though not all agree.
“It is universally agreed, however, that not even Trump would have the cheek to seek the Democratic nomination.
“An ‘Again Make America Great Again’ (AMAGA) third party challenge from Trump – similar to the rebellious spirit of Teddy Roosevelt’s Bull Moose run in 1912 – is a possibility.
“It would almost certainly be unsuccessful, and offer a huge incentive to Biden to run in ’24 as an incumbent president, because the opposition vote would be split.”
Neither is there any chance of Mr Trump going quietly even if he is defeated, Mr Church stressed.
He added: “It’s a safe bet that Trump would neither be a quiet ‘outgoing president’ before Inauguration Day nor a peaceful ‘former president’ after 20 January.
“Just as Barack Obama has criticised aspects of Trump’s policy despite the usual silent protocol of former presidents, Trump would find it hard to resist attacking both his successor Biden and predecessor Obama, as well as Obama’s predecessor George W Bush, and Bush’s predecessor Bill Clinton, reserving praise only for Obama’s successor and Biden’s predecessor.”
Tuesday’s Child is published by Amberley Publishing on January 15.
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