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"There are certainty a lot of things that Trump said that I would not have said or done," Thiel conceded in an interview with The Wall Street Journal. "I do think Trump is a fighter."
That characteristic serves him well in a combative Washington climate. Thiel compared Trump's feisty persona to Mitt Romney, who failed in his bid for presidency in the 2012 election.
"[I]n a way I could understand why Trump was doing this," he said. "Romney tried the opposite strategy where he was extremely nice to everybody and just got rolled."
Thiel, co-founder of PayPal and pioneer in many other major tech ventures, has taken considerable heat for his support for Trump.
While virtually ever other Silicon Valley CEO supported Hillary Clinton in the election,Thiel was out front in his backing of Trump. He spoke at the Republican National Convention and donated money toward the effort to elect the billionaire businessman.
The reason why Trump won, according to Thiel: "A lot of people voted for Trump because he just got it. He understood that things were very off track even if he didn't have a precise road map of what to do."
The Journal interview did not address recent reports that Thiel would join Trump's transition team. But he did say he has "no intention" of taking a full-time job in Washington.
Instead, he's looking for a Trump that, while fiery, would thwart critics who say he would divide the country.
"Well there is a big difference between campaigning and governing. And so certainly the hope is that Trump will be president of the entire country," he said. "That's certainly what he said in his acceptance speech last night and I am hopeful that he will be inclusive as a president."