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As the Republican presidential primary for 2024 begins to take shape, former nominee Mitt Romney shared his opinion on the potential candidates, including Wyoming Rep. Liz Cheney.
After her recent loss to a Trump-backed opponent, Cheney openly considered a bid for the White House — something the 2012 nominee said is not such a good idea.
Romney, who represents Utah in the U.S. Senate, told the South Valley Chamber of Commerce in Sandy, Utah on Thursday that Cheney would definitively not be the Republican nominee.
“I’m not going to encourage anyone to run for president. I’ve done that myself, and that’s something I’m not doing again. I don’t know if she really wants to do that. She would not become the nominee if she were to run. I can’t imagine that would occur,” Romney said alongside Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Rep. John Curtis, UT-03, the Deseret News reported.
Romney had supported Cheney before her primary.
Before Tuesday, the Utah Republican told Business Insider he hoped she would win her primary but “I recognize that in the time of Trump that may not be possible.”
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Cheney, who is a vocal critic of former President Donald Trump, has yet to officially say whether she is running or not, only that she is “thinking about” a potential run. The Wyoming Republican has said her ultimate goal is to prevent Trump from reclaiming the White House.
“I believe that Donald Trump continues to pose a very grave threat and risk to our republic. And I think that defeating him is going to require a broad and united front of Republicans, Democrats and Independents, and that’s what I intend to be a part of,” she told NBC’s “Today” show.
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As for Romney, he said Trump winning the Republican nomination is nearly inevitable, unless he decides not to run.
“My party has changed a great deal over the last decade. It will change again over the next 10 years. I can’t tell you how, but I think we’ll have more voices than one at some point,” Romney told The Desert News. “But right now one voice, and that’s President Trump’s voice, is the loudest and the strongest and bucking him is something people will do at their peril.”
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“I don’t think someone who is seen outside the Trump circle would have any realistic chance of becoming the nominee in 2024, barring something I can’t foresee at this stage,” he added. “If he doesn’t run again, I think it’ll be people who either were supporters of his or people who didn’t say much about him and then would be open to become the nominee.”
Romney and Cheney both backed the impeachment effort against Trump, who they claim was responsible for the Capitol riot on Jan. 6, 2021, and have pushed back on his unsubstantiated claims the 2020 election was stolen.