PayPal co-founder Peter Thiel has been one of President Trump’s earliest and most powerful supporters. However (and privately), Thiel’s support of the President, one who he once said was better in theory than in reality, may be waning with the Silicon Valley billionaire reportedly describing the administration as “incompetent” and potentially ending in “disaster.”
According to BuzzFeed, three sources have spoken on the condition of anonymity due to fears of retribution (Thiel funded a lawsuit that lead directly to the shuttering of Gawker.com and the sale of its parent company), to say Thiel is privately denigrating and criticizing the President and his administration while publicly remaining firmly in Trump’s camp.
In a series of candid conversations, Thiel has questioned Trump’s ability to be reelected because “there is a 50% chance this whole thing ends in disaster.”
Thiel’s comments come after high-profile public support of President Trump, including speaking at the Republican National Convention, writing op-eps, appearing at fundraising dinners, making his own large donations to the campaign, and eventually joining Trump’s transition team. However, the weekend before the election, Thiel reportedly said he had no confidence in either candidate and said whoever won would be a one-term president, likely brought down by a major financial catastrophe during their term. A month after the inauguration, Thiel was reportedly “annoyed” at the lack of accomplishments by the new administration and was worried stagnation would set in, preventing tax reform, one of Thiel’s biggest concerns, from being enacted.
“The night he won the election, I said President Trump would face an awesomely difficult task,” Thiel told BuzzFeed in a statement (while declining to deny the report). “Today it’s clear that resistance to change in Washington, D.C. has been even fiercer than I anticipated. We still need change. I support President Trump in his ongoing fight to achieve it.”