Former U.S. President Donald Trump. Source: Brendan Smialowski/AFP/Getty.
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  • Dozens of former Republicans are in talks to form a new centre-right, anti-Trump breakaway party, according to four people involved
  • They view the current Republican party as unwilling to stand up to former President Donald Trump and his attempts to undermine U.S. democracy
  • More than 120 people joined a Zoom call last week to discuss the breakaway party, which would run on a “principled conservatism” platform
  • It would run its own candidates in some races, but would also endorse centre-right candidates in others, whether Republican, Democrat or independent
  • Other options include the formation of a “faction” that would operate either inside the current Republican Party or outside it

Dozens of former Republicans are in talks to form a new centre-right, anti-Trump breakaway party, according to four people involved.

They include former elected Republicans, ex-Republican ambassadors and Republican strategists, who view the current Republican party as unwilling to stand up to former President Donald Trump and his attempts to undermine U.S. democracy.

More than 120 people joined a Zoom call last week to discuss the breakaway party, which would run on a “principled conservatism” platform, including adherence to the Constitution and the rule of law — ideas those involved say have been trashed by Trump.

The party would run its own candidates in some races but would also endorse centre-right candidates in others, whether Republican, Democrat or independent.

Evan McMullin, who was chief policy director for the House Republican Conference and ran as an independent in the 2016 presidential election, co-hosted the Zoom call.

Other participants included John Mitnick, general counsel for the Department of Homeland Security under Trump; former Republican congressman Charlie Dent; Elizabeth Neumann, deputy chief of staff in the Homeland Security Department under Trump; and Miles Taylor, another former Trump homeland security official.

“Large portions of the Republican Party are radicalising and threatening American democracy,” said McMullin.

“The party needs to recommit to truth, reason and founding ideals or there clearly needs to be something new.”

However, when asked about the discussion, Trump spokesman Jason Miller said, “These losers left the Republican Party when they voted for Joe Biden.”

According to McMullin, just over 40 per cent of those on the Zoom call supported the idea of a breakaway party, but other options included the formation of a “faction” that would operate either inside the current Republican Party or outside it.

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