It’s seeming increasingly unlikely that any living soul likes Mitt Romney. Perhaps this is a bit hyperbolic—but a recent event has given me occasion to marvel at the Republican senator’s ability to piss off just about everyone.
On Saturday, Romney was raucously booed and heckled while speaking at a Utah Republican Party convention, according to the New York Times. In other words, while speaking before an audience of his supposed allies, in his home state.
“Aren’t you embarrassed?” Romney said to the crowd, which was full of the party’s official delegates. “I understand that I have a few folks that don’t like me terribly much, and I’m sorry about that. But I express my mind as I believe is right, and I follow my conscience as I believe is right.”
Reader, the crowd was not embarrassed (I imagine). They continued to call Romney a “traitor” and “communist” until the outgoing chairman of the Utah Republican Party reportedly urged the delegates to “show respect” for the congressman. It’s also crucial to note that this speech preceded a vote to censure Romney for voting to convict Trump during the former president’s second Senate impeachment trial. The delegates’ vote failed, but only narrowly, with 798 voting against the censure and 711 voting in favor of it.
This is precisely the sort of situation politicians find themselves in when they claim to be moderate and reasonable but in truth have no right to these labels, instead using them as a clever distraction from the fact that they have no real convictions. Romney is one of these spineless lawmakers, willing to side with Democrats sometimes, but not when it truly counts. And for that reason he’ll continue to be both a thorn in the side of Democrats’ and a so-called traitor in the eyes of his own party.
And so, again, one wonders: Does anyone actually like Mitt Romney?