Trump glad Mitt Romney isn’t seeking re-election: ‘He didn’t serve with distinction’

Donald Trump reacted with glee that one of his main foes, Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah, is not seeking re-election.

The Republican senator and former 2012 presidential candidate has announced that he will not seek a second term in the Senate.

Mr. Romney, who also served as governor of Utah, has held the seat since 2018 and said in a video message that at age 76, he did not believe he would be fit to continue in the role.

In response to the news that one of his staunchest critics was leaving politics, the former president celebrated on social media platform Truth Social.

In a general post, he wrote: “Fantastic news for America, the great state of Utah and for the Republican Party.”

“Mitt Romney, sometimes referred to as Pierre Delecto, will not seek a second term in the US Senate, where he has not served with distinction,” he continued.

“He had a big primary fight against him, but now that won't be necessary. Congratulations to everybody. Make America Great Again!”

The reference to “Pierre Delecto” is since Mr Romney was revealed as the owner of an anonymous Twitter account under that pseudonym.

In an interview with USA Today in 2019, the senator said the account had been created by his son Matt in 2011 and he hadn't given much thought to the name. Mr Romney said he mainly used it to catch the news.

Mr Trump, on the other hand, has been known in the past to pretend to be his own reporter on the phone – the fictional John Barron or John Miller.

Sen. Romney, appearing as himself, said in his video statement: “I have spent the last 25 years in public service of one kind or another. At the end of another term, I would be in my mid-80s. Honestly, it's time for a new generation of leaders. They are the ones who have to make the decisions that will shape the world they will live in.”

Those words are especially poignant as senators from both parties face questions about their advanced age, and whether it's Mr. Trump or President-elect Joe Biden, who will be sworn in in January 2025, he would be 78 and 82. respectively.

Sen. Dianne Feinstein, the oldest sitting member of the body at 89, has faced frequent questions about her declining memory.

Similarly, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, 81, experienced two episodes where he froze when speaking to reporters in both Washington and Kentucky.

During his time in the US Senate, Mr Romney emerged as a negotiator and go-between between Democrats and Republicans, brokering the first two rounds of Covid-19 relief funds during the Trump administration.

In addition, Mr. Romney emerged as one of the few outspoken critics of Trump during his presidency, serving as the only Republican to vote to impeach Trump in his first impeachment in 2020 and one of seven Republicans to vote to condemn Trump. second citation for his role in the January 6 uprising.

During the Biden administration, he negotiated the bipartisan infrastructure bill, the first piece on gun safety in nearly 30 years, and a bill codifying protections for same-sex and interracial married couples. He also voted to confirm Justice Ketanji Brown Jackson to the Supreme Court.

In his unsuccessful run for the presidency in 2012, he lost to incumbent President Barack Obama, with the Democrat winning the Electoral College 332 votes to 206 and 66 million electoral votes to 61 million.