WASHINGTON DC — Incoming Utah senator Mitt Romney is criticizing the president again, this time in an op-ed for the Washington Post.
In a scathing op-ed incoming Utah Senator @MittRomney says even though there are a number of policies that he and President Trump agree on, the President shapes the public character and "In this province where the incumbent’s shortfall has been most glaring." pic.twitter.com/CUuaXxAcIq
— KSL Newsradio (@kslnewsradio) January 2, 2019
One day before he will be sworn in as Utah’s newest senator, Romney wrote that “the president has not risen to the mantle of the office,” and has failed to inspire or have honesty or integrity.
President Trump responded in a Tweet Wednesday morning.
Here we go with Mitt Romney, but so fast! Question will be, is he a Flake? I hope not. Would much prefer that Mitt focus on Border Security and so many other things where he can be helpful. I won big, and he didn’t. He should be happy for all Republicans. Be a TEAM player & WIN!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 2, 2019
“In some ways, this isn’t surprising, because Romney in 2016 was one of the leaders of the ‘Never Trump’ movement and came out pretty publicly and vocally in opposition to Trump,” said Bloomberg Washington reporter Cathleen Harrow.
“What it does do, especially given the timing, is it sets him up as an alternative to Trump. it sets him up as a leader to the anti-Trump faction of the Republican party,” she continued. She also sees this as Romney trying to be much different than retiring Utah senator Orrin Hatch.
ABC News Political Director Rick Klein says Romney’s critique could pose a threat to the president in 2020.
“It’s a biting critique of the president personally,” he said. “I think this is going to provoke something of a war between Romney supporters or the old mainline establishment Republicans, and Trump Republicans.”
Meanwhile, Utah’s other senator Mike Lee told Politico this week that he likes the president and what he has done, and will likely endorse his re-election bid.
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