Utah Sen. Mitt Romney, a Republican and vocal critic of President Trump, believes the president is likely to win reelection in November despite Trump’s poor poll numbers.
Romney said in early June that he has “long thought” that Trump would win reelection. He explained his reasoning in an interview with the Huffington Post for an article published on Thursday.
“There are enormous advantages to being the incumbent, number one,” Romney told HuffPost on Thursday. “Number two, I think [Trump] will tack more towards the middle in his communication than he has so far.”
“And number three, I think the voters that are most animated in opposition to the president tend not to come out to vote ― and that’s young people and the minorities. They’re active in polls, but not necessarily active at actually getting out to the polls,” the senator said.
Romney predicted on June 10 that Trump would win reelection and that the GOP would keep the Senate. Both predictions have appeared more bold in recent weeks as polls show Democrats gaining ground in competitive races and battleground states.
“I’m confident that we will keep the majority in the Senate. And I actually have long predicted the president will be reelected – I continue to think that’s the case,” Romney said at the time.
Fox News polls released on Friday show Trump down to Biden by a margin of 9 to 13 points in the states of Pennsylvania, Minnesota, and Michigan. Trump is losing to Biden by 8.7 points nationally, according to RealClearPolitics polling average.
Romney has been an outspoken critic of the president and was the only member of the GOP in either branch of Congress to support Trump’s removal from office over impeachment charges passed by the House last year and dismissed by the Senate in February. Romney is the first senator in U.S. history to vote for the impeachment of a president from his own party.
Prior to his vote to convict Trump of abuse of power, Romney passed out a note to every GOP senator explaining his reasoning:
As a Senator-juror, I swore an oath, before God, to exercise “impartial justice.” I am a profoundly religious person. I take an oath before God as enormously consequential. I knew from the outset that being tasked with judging the President, the leader of my own party, would be the most difficult decision I have ever faced. I was not wrong.
Corrupting an election to keep oneself in office is perhaps the most abusive and disruptive violation of one’s oath of office that I can imagine.
I am aware that there are people in my party and in my state who will strenuously disapprove of my decision, and in some quarters, I will be vehemently denounced. I am sure to hear abuse from the President and his supporters. Does anyone seriously believe I would consent to these consequences other than from an inescapable conviction that my oath before God demanded it of me?
As it is with each senator, my vote is an act of conviction. We have come to different conclusions, fellow senators, but I trust we have all followed the dictates of our conscience.