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"No matter what happens in this election, what Trump represents isn't crazy and it's not going away," he said, according to prepared remarks. "He points toward a new Republican Party beyond the dogmas of Reaganism. He points even beyond the remaking of one party to a new American politics that overcomes denial, rejects bubble thinking and reckons with reality.
"When the distracting spectacles of this election season are forgotten and the history of our time is written, the only important question will be whether or not that new politics came too late."
Speaking at the National Press Club in Washington, Thiel amplified on his support for the Republican nominee to whom he donated $1.25 million in a move that stunned Silicon Valley and has led to him being ostracized by his peers.
Thiel conceded that Trump is not the perfect candidate. But after decades dominated by asset bubbles and a Washington culture that has made many Americans feel disaffected and powerless, Thiel said Trump represents a new path.
"I don't agree with everything Donald Trump has said and done — and I don't think the millions of other people voting for him do, either," he said.
"It's not a lack of judgment that leads Americans to vote for Trump; we're voting for Trump because we judge the leadership of our country to have failed," he added.
The speech comes amid yet another stunning development in the race between Trump and Democrat Hillary Clinton. On Friday, FBI Director James Comey said the investigation into Clinton's use of a private email server while secretary of state had taken a turn with the discovery of more emails possibly related to the investigation.
Thiel did not address the email controversy, sticking instead to bemoaning a country beset by asset bubbles, stuck with a stubbornly high global trade deficit and caught in military conflicts throughout the Middle East.
"Just as much as it's about making America great, Trump's agenda is about making America a normal country," he said. "A normal country doesn't have a half-trillion-dollar trade deficit. A normal country doesn't fight five simultaneous undeclared wars. In a normal country, the government actually does its job."
In an on-stage interview following the speech, Thiel said he would have preferred to see a matchup between Trump and Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders, the democratic socialist who gave Clinton a tussle before ultimately endorsing her despite repeatedly saying during the campaign that she was not qualified to be president.
"I think both of them viscerally felt the decline" of the country, Thiel said. "That would have been a very different sort of debate."
Thiel has a slew of noteworthy investments. He co-founded PayPal in 1998 and was the first outside investor in Facebook. He's also written noteworthy books, the first of which was "The Diversity Myth" and in 2007 was outed as gay by Gawker.
Long a celebrated part of the Silicon Valley scene, he has been made a pariah in an area where Trump support is scarce. He remains defiant.
"Nobody would suggest that Donald Trump is a humble man," Thiel said. "But the big things he's right about amount to a much-needed dose of humility in our politics."