Romney And Trump Set Aside Differences, Romney Accepts POTUS’ Endorsement

The Washington Post/The Washington Post

President Donald Trump and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney set aside their differences on Twitter Monday evening, when the President tweeted a “full support” endorsement of the Republican Utah Senate candidate and Romney embraced the backing.

Trump said Romney would make “a great senator” and “worthy successor” to retiring Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), a Trump favorite.

Within minutes, Romney, also the former 2012 Republican presidential nominee, responded, thanking Trump for his support and saying he hopes “over the course of the campaign I also earn the support and endorsement of the people of Utah.”

Relations between the Senate hopeful and the President have not always been so cheery.

In 2016, Trump said Romney “choked like a dog” during his 2012 presidential bid against former President Barack Obama. Romney’s been highly critical in return and has consistently criticized Trump’s fitness for office since he became a serious political contender.

During the 2016 Republican primaries, Romney called Trump a “phony” and joined efforts to block Trump’s GOP nomination at the Republican convention. More recently, Romney criticized Trump’s full-throated embrace of former Republican Alabama Senate candidate Roy Moore, denounced the President’s response to the deadly white supremacist rally in Charlottesville, Virginia last summer and called out Trump on Twitter for the President’s reported “shithole” comments about African nations.

Before moving into the White House, Trump considered Romney for secretary of state, but eventually tapped former Exxon Mobile CEO Rex Tillerson for the gig. Critics speculated Trump was simply trying to humiliate Romney with the courtship.

NEW YORK, NY – NOVEMBER 29: (L to R) President-elect Donald Trump and Mitt Romney dine at Jean Georges restaurant, November 29, 2016 in New York City. President-elect Donald Trump and his transition team are in the process of filling cabinet and other high level positions for the new administration. (Photo by Drew Angerer/Getty Images)

When asked about the status of their relationship before Trump tweeted his endorsement Monday, Romney told the Associated Press that they had talked on the phone in recent months and that the two had “a cordial and respectful relationship.”