As the Democrat impeachment circus concludes its run on the outskirts of fathomability and the prospect of a Senate trial looms, the imponderables stack up. Among those imponderables is the question of how Senator Mitt Romney will vote if there is such a trial. At least twenty Senate Republicans would have to vote for impeachment to achieve the constitutionally-mandated two-thirds majority.
Could Mitt Romney be one of those yes-to-impeach votes? Romney is one of only three GOP senators, along with Murkowski and Collins, who refused to join a resolution blasting the House inquiry.
In life, and especially in politics, there are occurrences and situations that resist alignment with logical sensibility. Romney’s turn as the anonymous Twitter-tweeting Pierre Delecto is one of them. Like the “thinking process” of disgraced “actor” Jussie Smollett, or the insane healthcare and immigration proposals espoused by Democrat presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, there’s a mentality on display that’s challenging to figure out. You don’t want to delve too deeply, but with Romney and the Senate vote in the cards, we must.
Whatever your opinion of Romney’s policy-making or governing political ideology, he is a man of accomplishment. Granted, he got a special leg-up being the son of Governor George Romney. But privileged sons (Hunter Biden, anyone?) have been known to squander notable legacies, become profligate, screw up and amount to much less than their lineage might preordain. Not Romney. He worked hard, became wealthy in his own right, rose to positions of great influence, campaigned for office and won. As everybody even marginally informed about politics knows, he was Governor of Massachusetts, a front-running 2012 presidential candidate, and is currently Utah’s United States senator.
So, what’s with this oddball Pierre Delecto turn? Why would such an accomplished, influential man resort to such a bush-league tactic: setting up a patently ridiculous anonymous Twitter account to defend himself and sing his praises, mostly with retweets that cast him in a positive light? The mind boggles. There were only eight followers, over 700 followed, and only ten original tweets were ever generated by the account. What multimillionaire has time for this nonsense?
It was all so unnecessary, and ineffectual. Now that his cornball nom de plume has become public, it’s embarrassing for a public figure of Romney’s stature.
Let’s not bury the lede too far into the post: Compare the Pierre Delecto account with President Trump’s Twitter account and the contrast provides a credible indication of why Trump won and Romney lost.
Going back all the way to 2011 when Romney set up the Twitter account, the American people were desperate for a leader who would righteously confront the elites of both parties that were selling the stars and stripes down the river. A president who would call out ingrate foreign nations and scurrilous globalist entities, and retaliate against entrenched bureaucracies head-on. They wanted a big shake-up in the national halls of power.
With Trump, what they saw and wanted is what they got.
With Pierre Delecto, we’re offered a glimpse in hindsight of the kind of obtuse, back-channeling, establishment, and ultimately (sorry) shallow chief executive Romney would have been. A president who, while better than the atrociously corrupt Barack Obama, would have left the ball on the America First agenda unmoved. A president who would have repeatedly punted in the face of globalist hegemony, settled for field goals with the end zone within reach, and conditionalized his capitulations behind politi-speak while the play clock ran out.
I remember frequently imploring my Tea Party associates in 2012 to “get behind the Governor.” Anything, went the logic, was better than four more for the Obama administration. As Deep State subterfuge with alleged complicity going all the way up to the 2009-2017 Obama Oval Office shows, such concerns (I was actually a Gingrich man before Romney sewed up the nomination) were inarguably valid.
My Tea Party friends understood the position, but the expression on their faces when I cited the Romney imperative can be compared to the way a person looks when informed that the lab has botched their Cologuard results, and that they must submit another sample.
The men and women swelling the ranks of the opposition were fired up. Many had engaged for the first time ever, or re-engaged for the first time in years. They wanted a small-government, fiscally responsible, conservative constitutionalist, not the latest next-in-line establishment candidate. They saw direct parallels between Obamacare and Romneycare. As others have shown in exhaustive analyses of the Trump/Clinton election, Tea Partiers were precursors to the scores of millions who elected Trump in 2016. In 2012, as Election Day drew near, these patriot-minded, grassroots activists and organizers reluctantly assured me that they would turn out for Mitt. Surely, many of them did, but the record clearly shows that not enough of them did.
Senator Romney is a man of big accomplishment. But there is a smallness indicated by his need and motivation to defend himself via ghost-tweeter Pierre Delecto.
In failing to rise to the occasion demanded by the Republican electorate in 2012, Mitt Romney is not alone. For reasons as varied as each candidate’s history, vision, and perceived character, no post-2008 GOP candidate has.
Only Donald Trump did that.
Now, as Majority Leader McConnell gears up for the first impeachment since Bill Clinton survived a Senate impeachment trial, we have to wonder. Will any Republicans defect? Will the former Mr. Delecto?
Mark Ellis is the author of “A Death on the Horizon,” a novel of political upheaval and cultural intrigue. He came aboard at PJ Media in 2015. His literary hangout is Liberty Island. Follow Mark on Twitter.