A Atlantic piece on a coming bio , Romney: A Reckoning, of the US Senator from Massachusetts that has been reping Utah…..
It begins with a text message from Angus King, the junior senator from Maine: “Could you give me a call when you get a chance? Important.”
Romney calls, and King informs him of a conversation he’s just had with a high-ranking Pentagon official. Law enforcement has been tracking online chatter among right-wing extremists who appear to be planning something bad on the day of Donald Trump’s upcoming rally in Washington, D.C. The president has been telling them the election was stolen; now they’re coming to steal it back. There’s talk of gun smuggling, of bombs and arson, of targeting the traitors in Congress who are responsible for this travesty. Romney’s name has been popping up in some frightening corners of the internet, which is why King needed to talk to him. He isn’t sure Romney will be safe.
Romney hangs up and immediately begins typing a text to Mitch McConnell, the Senate majority leader. McConnell has been indulgent of Trump’s deranged behavior over the past four years, but he’s not crazy. He knows that the election wasn’t stolen, that his guy lost fair and square. He sees the posturing by Republican politicians for what it is. He’ll want to know about this, Romney thinks. He’ll want to protect his colleagues, and himself.
Romney sends his text: “In case you have not heard this, I just got a call from Angus King, who said that he had spoken with a senior official at the Pentagon who reports that they are seeing very disturbing social media traffic regarding the protests planned on the 6th. There are calls to burn down your home, Mitch; to smuggle guns into DC, and to storm the Capitol. I hope that sufficient security plans are in place, but I am concerned that the instigator—the President—is the one who commands the reinforcements the DC and Capitol police might require.”
McConnell never responds…..
To Romney, this was the problem with the Trump-era GOP. He believed there were still decent, well-intentioned leaders in his party—they were just nervous. They needed a nudge. A role model, perhaps. As the former nominee, he told me, he felt that he “had the potential to be an alternative voice for Republicans.”
Five years earlier, while running for president, Romney had accepted Trump’s endorsement. At the time, he’d rationalized the decision—yes, Trump was a buffoon and a conspiracy theorist, but he was just a guy on reality TV, not a serious political figure. Romney now realized that he’d badly underestimated the potency of Trumpism. But in the summer of 2017, it still seemed possible that the president would be remembered as an outlier.
Two days before he was sworn in as a senator, Romney published an op-ed in The Washington Post designed to signal his independence from Trump. “On balance,” Romney wrote, the president “has not risen to the mantle of the office.” He pledged to work with him when they agreed on an issue, to oppose him when they didn’t, and to speak out when necessary. He thought of this as a new way to be a Republican senator in Trump’s Washington.
His colleagues were not impressed. A few days after Romney was sworn in, Politico ran a story about the “chilly reception” he was receiving from his fellow Republican senators. The story quoted several of them, on the record or anonymously, griping about his unwillingness to get along with the leader of their party. Romney emailed the story to his advisers, describing himself as “the turd in the punch bowl.” “These guys have got to justify their silence, at least to themselves.”….
Mitt Romney IS a Conservative Republican….
But he DID vote to support impeaching Donald Trump TWICE…..