An upcoming biography of Senator Mitt Romney details his relationship with his fellow GOP senators.
Romney, who has been an outspoken critic of Trump for years, said Republican lawmakers told him they envy him.
He recalled McConnell telling him Trump was an “idiot.”
Shortly before the first impeachment trial of President Donald Trump, Senator Mitt Romney recalled then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell telling him that Trump was an “idiot” who “doesn’t think when he says things.”
That’s evident in the upcoming biography “Romney: A Reckoning,” an excerpt of which was published Wednesday in The Atlantic following the senator’s announcement that he would not run for re-election in 2024.
The excerpt notes that during his handful of years in the Senate, Romney struggled to determine which “version” of McConnell he considered “authentic”: the side of McConnell that would publicly do what Trump wanted, or the side that would side with McConnell. the ability to bash the 45th president in private conversations.
The book says that in October 2019, just before the House investigation into Trump’s first impeachment began, Romney tweeted that it was “wrong and appalling” that Trump had pressured China and Ukraine to investigate Biden. Soon after, Trump began a social media campaign against “#IMPEACHMITTROMNEY,” which he said “played into the hands of the Do Nothing Democrats.”
Weeks after the back-and-forth, Romney saw a news report detailing how McConnell had privately urged Trump to stop pursuing Republican senators. After seeing this, Romney thanked McConnell. Politico published a story in late October 2019 mentioning McConnell’s reported private plea.
“He’s an idiot,” McConnell says in the book. ‘He doesn’t think when he says things. How stupid do you have to be not to realize that you’re not allowed to attack your jurors?’
The book noted that McConnell told Romney he was “lucky” because he could publicly “say the things we’re all thinking.”
“You’re in a position to say things about him that we all agree with but can’t say,” Romney recalled McConnell telling him.
A spokesperson for McConnell told The Atlantic that the Senate leader does not recall that specific conversation. McConnell’s office did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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