By Rob Okun
Donald Trump is considering formally conceding the presidential election to Joe Biden as early as next week but only if the Republican Party agrees to change its name.
Sources inside the White House and the Republican National Committee say the president is serious about acknowledging Biden as president-elect on the condition that the GOP formally change its name to the Trumpublican Party.
“Donald is all about his brand,” former Trump lawyer and fixer Michael Cohen said when he heard the news. “Think about how many products and edifices bear his name—from steaks to towers; universities to golf courses. It’s not a big stretch to see that he’d be looking for a major naming opportunity before leaving office.”
To Rudolph W. Giuliani, Mr. Trump’s personal attorney, “The Republican Party has for all intents and purposes become the Trumpublican Party these last four years.” The former New York City mayor turned wild-eyed Trump apologist was speaking with reporters at an informal press conference outside of his hair colorist’s salon in midtown Manhattan. “What better way to honor President Trump’s historic place in U.S. history than by calling the party what it is?”
Former presidential counselor Kellyanne Conway is credited with conceiving of the “Trumpublicans” idea. In an email obtained by this writer she wrote, “When I first pitched the notion of “alternative facts” at the beginning of the administration—a concept the White House has brilliantly refined these last four years—I could not have imagined that at the end of his term we’d have an alternative name for the Republican Party. I’m just glad I could play a small part.” (Ms. Conway and her husband George Conway, a prominent Republican lawyer and cofounder of the Lincoln Project, producers of dozens of powerful anti-Trump campaign ads, both left their positions in August after one of their four children, then 15 year-old daughter Claudia, announced she was seeking emancipation from her parents).
Mr. Conway says he learned about his wife’s idea to rename the GOP the Trumpublicans when Claudia was bringing out the recycling. “She was dumping the paper contents into the receptacle when a partially shredded page in her mother’s handwriting fell on the driveway,” Mr. Conway wrote in an email. “The Lincoln Project is going to have a field day with this cockamamie idea.”
Mr. Trump, whose flailing attempt to undo the election results through a series of failed court challenges in swing states, was slowly beginning to acknowledge he was running out of options to cling to power after state election officials—including Republican judges—kept denying his unfounded claims of voter fraud.
When his oldest son, Don, Jr., revealed he had tested positive for COVID-19, a senior White House aide suggested to Mr. Trump that he could use his son’s diagnosis to both concede and improve his legacy with voters critical of his handling of the coronavirus pandemic. “Sir, you could say because of your concern for Don Jr.’s health—and that of all Americans who have contracted COVID-19—you would be stepping away from the election fracas to help care for your son.” Mr. Trump is believed to have flitted with the idea but dismissed it fearing he’d be seen as weak and unmanly. “That’s what Sleepy Joe would do,” Trump is believed to have said. “That’s not me.” Another senior aide, who was in the Oval office when Mr. Trump put Ms. Conway’s call on speaker phone while he practiced putting, said that when he heard her say, ‘Sir, what do you think about calling it the Trumpublican Party?’ the president “lit up like a Christmas tree.”’