I’m paraphrasing, but only a bit. When asked what he thinks the point of the Republican Party is after seven years of observing it from the inside, he says, “The goal is to win.” Period. He’s learned some hard lessons in Washington. But they’re the correct ones.

Another cutting line: “I have not figured out how to commercialize conservatism as some of my critics have.”

I’d watch the hell out of a Trey Gowdy talk show, for what it’s worth, but the clear import of this interview is that he’s done, done, done with politics. I doubt anyone could throw enough money at him to make him reconsider. I doubt anyone would want to. As he escapes the orbit of party orthodoxy on matters like Trump and Russiagate, he’ll be anathema to outlets like Fox News and conservative talk radio. He’s far too conservative for MSNBC. And at CNN he’d probably be slotted in as Conservative Panel Guest #394-XZ, rotated in and out ad nauseam for the dispiriting daily food fight. If there’s any job in politics less satisfying than Congress, that may be it.

If I had to guess, I’d say he’s headed back to the D.A.’s office. The population outside South Carolina may never hear from him again. Except on new episodes of “Forensic Files,” of course.