Among the few Republican lawmakers to criticize President Trump amid Democrats’ impeachment inquiry is Utah Senator Mitt Romney, who sought the presidency in 2008 and 2012.
“When the only American citizen President Trump singles out for China’s investigation is his political opponent in the midst of the Democratic nomination process, it strains credulity to suggest that it is anything other than politically motivated,” tweeted Romney last Friday. “By all appearances, the president’s brazen and unprecedented appeal to China and to Ukraine to investigation Joe Biden is wrong and appalling.”
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Trump shot back with a series of tweets, suggesting Utah voters had “made a big mistake,” accusing Romney of “playing into the hands” of Democrats, and congratulating Democrats for having no “Mitt Romney types.”
“Somebody please wake up Mitt Romney and tell him that my conversation with the Ukrainian President was a congenial and very appropriate one, and my statement on China pertained to corruption, not politics,” tweeted Trump on Sunday. “If Mitt worked this hard on Obama, he could have won. Sadly, he choked!”
Trump included the hashtag “Impeach Mitt Romney,” although the law doesn’t work that way for removing a member of Congress.
This isn’t the first time Romney and Trump have argued about key issues, and some are expecting Romney to step up and lead the Republican opposition during the impeachment inquiry.
The anti-Trump group Defending Democracy Together is already running ads in Utah encouraging Romney to speak up.
“I think Mitt Romney came back to the senate for a reason, and I hope this is the reason,” said Sarah Longwell, the group’s leader. “This is going to be the moment where Mitt Romney will play – I think – the decisive role in what Republicans do going forward.”
Romney is in a unique position here. He is broadly trusted as a moral leader, but his relationship with Big Corporate is at odds with the populist uprising.
The chances Trump will be impeached are about one in a million; but if it happens, Republicans will need a savior. Romney’s reputation and bank account make him the perfect candidate to step in.
Romney is unlikely to confront Trump should impeachment fail; but if impeachment succeeds, you can bet he won’t pass up the chance to take another shot at the GOP nomination.
Editor’s note: Anyone can tell he is “peacocking” right now, itching to get into the race. His jabs at Trump allow him to be the here of the “never Trumpers” but there are not enough of them elect him in the unlikely event that Trump is impeached. At this point, I would almost rather have Hillary…