BOSTON (AP) — U.S. Sen. Mitt Romney was named the recipient of the Profile in Courage Award on Friday for splitting with his party and becoming the only Republican to vote to convict former President Donald Trump during his first impeachment trial.
“I’m very appreciative of the honor, but also humbled by it,” the senator from Utah told NBC’s “Today” show in an interview aired Friday.
Trump’s first trial in 2020 focused on the former president’s relationship with Ukraine. Romney became the first senator in U.S. history to vote for the conviction of a president who belonged to his own party, and was subject to intense criticism by Trump’s supporters.
“I sleep well because I know that I did what my conscience told me was the right thing to do,” Romney, 74, said on “Today.”
I’m humbled by the Kennedy family’s recognition today. But I see courage every week from my colleagues in the Senate, many of whom make tough decisions to do what they believe is right even though it may be politically unpopular.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) March 26, 2021
The Profile in Courage Award was created by the family of the late President John F. Kennedy to honor public figures who risk their careers by embracing unpopular positions for the greater good.
Kennedy’s daughter, Caroline Kennedy, told “Today” that Romney’s actions were reminiscent of the lawmakers highlighted in her father’s book “Profiles in Courage.”
“He was willing to risk his career and his popularity within his own party to do what’s right for our country and to follow his conscience and Constitution and his impeachment votes,” she said.
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