Mitt Romney

Mitt Romney is not a hero. Once the moderate Republican governor of Massachusetts, the billionaire swung hard to the right when he clinched the GOP presidential nomination in 2012, even accepting the endorsement of Donald Trump.

But unlike other high-profile Republicans, Romney has seemingly engaged in some introspection over the last several years. He was the only Republican senator who voted to convict Trump in his first impeachment trial, and is one of the few voices on the right who outwardly condemns the disgraced ex-president for his role on Jan. 6 and other egregious conduct.

The bar might be low, but compared to his Republican colleagues, Romney is a beacon of political courage.

And now he’s spilling the tea.

The 76-year-old isn’t seeking reelection in 2024; and as a result, is no longer hiding his disdain for many in his caucus. Over the last couple of years, Romney has spoken at length with journalist McKay Coppins, who wrote a soon-to-be released biography of the Utah senator.

Coppins published excerpts from his book in The Atlantic, and Romney’s commentary is scathing.

For example, here’s how he describes Mike Pence:

“Romney had long been put off by Pence’s pious brand of Trump sycophancy. No one, he told me, has been “more loyal, more willing to smile when he saw absurdities, more willing to ascribe God’s will to things that were ungodly than Mike Pence.”

Damn, Gina! That’s pretty harsh. Romney’s views on Josh Hawley and Ted Cruz are equally unflattering:

What bothered Romney most about Hawley and his cohort was the oily disingenuousness. “They know better!” he told me. “Josh Hawley is one of the smartest people in the Senate, if not the smartest, and Ted Cruz could give him a run for his money.” They were too smart, Romney believed, to actually think that Trump had won the 2020 election. Hawley and Cruz “were making a calculation,” Romney told me, “that put politics above the interests of liberal democracy and the Constitution.”

When Hawley objected to the election results on Jan. 6 (after rioters stormed Congress and attempted a coup), Romney appeared to be staring right through his soul.

After nearly six years in the Senate, Romney told Coppins he thinks a “very large portion” of the Republican Party “really doesn’t believe in the Constitution.”

That seemingly includes Mitch McConnell, who’s ruled the GOP Senate caucus for years. Romney sent McConnell a text message on Jan. 2, 2021 warning him about the violence that was expected to unravel four days later.

McConnell never responded. The Republican leader didn’t vote to convict Trump in either of his impeachment trials.

Romney says his candor has come with a cost, especially to his safety. He’s been spending $5,000 per day on private security for his family since Jan. 6.

Romney told Coppins one Republican lawmaker said he wanted to vote for Trump’s impeachment, but didn’t so he could protect his family.

Despite two impeachments and four criminal indictments, Trump’s hold on the Republican Party seems greater than ever. Romney doesn’t hold much respect for the next wave of GOP senators, including J.D. Vance, the best-selling author of Hillbilly Elegy who turned into a hardcore MAGA head when he successfully ran for senate last year.

“I don’t know that I can disrespect someone more than J. D. Vance,” Romney told Coppins.

The next Senate GOP lunch should be interesting, huh?

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