In light of recent comments from President Donald Trump, Utah Sen. Mitt Romney attempted to display his discontentment with the President on social media, only to receive a barrage of biting commentary and harsh criticism from others online.
Trump generated outrage and disapproval from political allies and opponents on Wednesday due to his staunch refusal to oblige to a peaceful transfer of power if he finds himself on the losing end of the Nov. 3 presidential election.
When asked at a news conference about whether he would commit to a normal transfer of power, the president passed on the opportunity to co-sign to an orderly election process. “We’re going to have to see what happens,” Trump said. “You know that I’ve been complaining very strongly about the ballots, and the ballots are a disaster.”
When asked by a reporter to respond to the general unrest that has been building in the run-up to the election, Trump continued to express his disapproval with the mail-in ballot process, which he has denounced, without evidence, on the grounds that it is fraudulent and will lead to an invalid election outcome.
“Get rid of the ballots and you’ll have a very peaceful — there won’t be a transfer, frankly. There will be a continuation,” Trump said.
Though most congressional Republicans have yet to respond to President Trump’s comments, several GOP lawmakers, including Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, have distanced themselves from his remarks.
Romney was one of the first to respond. He tweeted: “Fundamental to democracy is the peaceful transition of power; without that, there is Belarus. Any suggestion that a president might not respect this Constitutional guarantee is both unthinkable and unacceptable.”
Romney and Trump’s relationship has considerably deteriorated of late, with the senator emerging as an unlikely adversary in Washington. He was the only Republican to vote for the president’s removal in the Senate impeachment trial, which resulted in Trump’s acquittal.
However, Twitter users were not buying the oppositional nature of the statement and slammed Romney for his recent decision to support the rapid confirmation of a replacement for the late Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Romney’s choice means Trump is liable to have the votes needed to add a conservative justice to the court, which would establish a 6-3 majority in favor of the conservatives.
In light of this recent event, the responses to Romney’s Twitter post were cutting and harsh. One user wrote, “It is actually your job to protect the American people from Trump. Trump does not want a transition of power. He wants a continuation which is exactly what he said! You need to protect the republic and a democracy. That is what you were elected for.”
Another user posted, “Then don’t vote for his Supreme Court nominee who he will pick based on who will support his re-election when he inevitably challenges his loss in courts. Take a stand now or you will be responsible. History is being written in real time. Will you be a patriot or a traitor?”
The Biden campaign also released an official response to Trump’s statements on Wednesday. “The American people will decide this election. And the United States government is perfectly capable of escorting trespassers out of the White House.”