Where have you gone, Willard Romney? A nation turns its lonely eyes to you.
Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney – most famous for getting mollywhopped by Barack Obama in the 2012 election – is hopping back on that horse.
Romney has been relatively quiet since his ignominious defeat, resurfacing briefly last year to suck up to Donald Trump for the Secretary of State role that ultimately went to someone else, then bitching on TV about Trump when that didn’t work out.
Romney has decided to once again enter the realm of politics; as the impending retirement of Utah Senator Orrin Hatch draws near, Romney is expected to formally announce his candidacy tomorrow for the U.S. Senate as Hatch’s potential replacement.
The move is not entirely unexpected; Romney, a Utah resident since 2012 (burn) has been making the rounds on television since Trump’s inauguration, publicly castigating Trump’s more egregious policy proposals and positioning himself as the “principled conservative” that Americans need.
In fact, that positioning has led Romney to be an early favorite in the race – his supporters believe that Romney’s influence in the Senate and his overall popularity among Utahns and many Americans could be invaluable in slowing our inexorable slide toward authoritarianism.
So far, though, Romney doesn’t appear equipped to serve as the counterweight to Trump; despite his anti-Trump rhetoric, Romney still lobbied for the position of Secretary of State that would eventually go to Rex Tillerson, even going so far as to mute his criticism of Trump while he was still nominally under consideration for the gig.
But Romney dramatically underestimated Trump’s capacity for pettiness. It soon seemed clear that Trump primarily met with Romney in order to dangle Secretary of State in front of Romney as a show of power, because our president is an immature bag of shit.
Trump, for his part, does not seem eager to let the feud die, thus far mocking the idea of Romney as Hatch’s successor in an attempt to mobilize his rabid supporters against Romney. However, it seems unlikely that Trump will be successful; Romney is overwhelmingly popular among Utah residents.