An upcoming Sen. Mitt Romney biography details his relationship with his fellow GOP senators.
Romney, who's been a vocal critic of Trump for years, said GOP lawmakers told him they envy him.
He recalled McConnell telling him that Trump was an "idiot."
Shortly before President Donald Trump's first impeachment trial, Sen. Mitt Romney remembers then-Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell telling him Trump was an "idiot" who "doesn't think when he says things."
That's according to the upcoming biography, "Romney: A Reckoning," an excerpt of which was published in The Atlantic on Wednesday after the senator's announcement that he wouldn't run for reelection in 2024.
The excerpt notes that during his handful of years in the Senate, Romney has struggled to determine which "version" of McConnell he believed to be "authentic": The side of McConnell who would publicly do what Trump wanted, or the side who would take the opportunity to bash the 45th president in private conversations.
The book says that in October 2019, just before the House inquiry began for Trump's first impeachment, Romney tweeted that it was "wrong and appalling" for Trump to have pressed China and Ukraine to investigate Biden. Soon after, Trump began a social media campaign to "#IMPEACHMITTROMNEY" who he said was "playing right into the hands of the Do Nothing Democrats."
Weeks after the back-and-forth, Romney spotted a news report detailing how McConnell had privately insisted to Trump that he needed to quit going after Republican senators. After seeing this, Romney thanked McConnell. Politico published a story in late October 2019 that mentioned McConnell's reported private plea.
"He's an idiot," the book says McConnell responded. "He doesn't think when he says things. How stupid do you have to be to not realize that you shouldn't attack your jurors?"
The book noted that McConnell told Romney he was "lucky" because he could publicly "say the things that we all think."
"You're in a position to say things about him that we all agree with but can't say," Romney remembered McConnell telling him.
A spokesperson for McConnell told The Atlantic that the Senate leader doesn't recall that particular conversation. McConnell's office did not respond to Insider's request for comment.
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