In an opinion piece published in the Washington Post late Tuesday evening, incoming Sen. Mitt Romney heavily criticized President Donald Trump.
Titled “The president shapes the public character of the nation. Trump’s character falls short,” Romney bemoans the recent staff departures of Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, then moves on to denouncing Trump’s “conduct over the past two years,” saying “the president has not risen to the mantle of the office.” Romney also praises some of Trump’s tax cuts and the criminal justice reform bill that was passed. But then the former presidential candidate really knocks the president:
To a great degree, a presidency shapes the public character of the nation. A president should unite us and inspire us to follow “our better angels.” A president should demonstrate the essential qualities of honesty and integrity, and elevate the national discourse with comity and mutual respect. As a nation, we have been blessed with presidents who have called on the greatness of the American spirit. With the nation so divided, resentful and angry, presidential leadership in qualities of character is indispensable. And it is in this province where the incumbent’s shortfall has been most glaring.
As if any past president has lived up to these expectations.
Senators write op-eds all the time. This is nothing new. But because Romney is going after Trump, the media is naturally gleeful.
The same media that insinuated Romney was an out-of-touch, heartless, racist, animal abusing potential murderer now loves the guy because he appears to be on their side. Wait until he votes with other Republicans in the senate and see what the media thinks of him then.
A few hours after the op-ed was published, an executive producer for CNN’s “New Day” tweeted that “Mitt Romney to give first interview to CNN’s @jaketapper this afternoon after his scathing op-ed slamming President Trump’s character.”
Such is not the case when senators write about policy suggestions that don’t align with the left-wing media’s agenda.
But here comes Mitt Romney – the media’s current favorite Republican. Romney was always seen as more of a Jeff Flake type when he announced he was running for the senate, but the new Utah senator didn’t directly criticize the president while campaigning in 2018. But now that he’s safely elected for six years and is about to enter the upper chamber, he has something to say.
Funny how that works.
Trump, for his part, responded to Romney’s op-ed with a tweet earlier this 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!” Trump wrote.
Later in the day, Trump told reporters that, again, he hopes Romney will be a “team player,” according to CNN.
During his CNN interview, Romney said he wants "to see what the other options are" before endorsing anyone for president. He also said he wouldn't run, but wouldn't endorse Trump at this time. To be fair, he also credited Trump with winning, since "he did something I couldn't do."
Romney will probably fall in line with Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) and other senate Republicans – and when he does, watch the media turn on him in an instant.