Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyGOP voters in New Hampshire back Trump Overnight Health Care: HHS issues rule requiring drug prices in TV ads | Grassley, Wyden working on plan to cap drug costs in Medicare | Warren to donate money from family behind opioid giant Dem senator calls on McConnell to endorse bipartisan bill to raise smoking age to 21 MORE (R-Utah) voted against one of President TrumpDonald John TrumpLawsuit alleges Trump campaign paid women less than men Graham encourages Donald Trump Jr. to plead the 5th Crunch time for Senate disaster aid talks MORE’s judicial picks Tuesday over past controversial comments the judge made about former President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaPress: Who will be the first conservative to take on Trump? Democrats seeking nanny state policies voters rejected in 2016 Far-right US pastor becomes first person banned from Ireland under exclusion powers MORE.
Romney, who faced off against Obama in the 2012 presidential race, cast the lone GOP “no” vote against Judge Michael Truncale, who was ultimately confirmed to the Eastern District of Texas by a 49-46 margin.
Truncale raised eyebrows in 2011 when he called Obama an “un-American imposter.”
He later told the Senate Judiciary Committee that he was “merely expressing frustration by what I perceived as a lack of overt patriotism on behalf of President Obama,” adding that he did not subscribe to the “birther” theory.
However, Romney found enough fault with the original remark to vote against Truncale’s nomination.
“He made particularly disparaging comments about President Obama. And as the Republican nominee for president, I just couldn’t subscribe to that in a federal judge,” Romney told Politico in a brief interview.
“This was not a matter of qualifications or politics. This was something specifically to that issue as a former nominee of our party.”
Romney has emerged as one of the few GOP critics of Trump, often hitting the president over his rhetoric. He most recently bucked the White House by opposing its plans to nominate Herman CainHerman CainHow liberals tore down the nomination of Steve Moore Moore won’t be at the Fed, and the economy will be better off for it The Hill’s Morning Report — Dem ire at Barr intensifies MORE to the Federal Reserve Board.
Though he votes in line with the president more often than not, he is more likely to oppose the White House than most other Republican senators, according to a tally compiled by FiveThirtyEight.