Romney: 'Putin and Kim Jong Un deserve a censure rather than flattery'
Romney 'sickened' by Trump's behavior in Mueller report
Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) said Friday that he is "sickened" by the behavior described in special counsel Robert Mueller's report, including the actions of President Trump.
"I am sickened at the extent and pervasiveness of dishonesty and misdirection by individuals in the highest office of the land, including the President," Romney said in a statement posted to Twitter.
Romney's comments came a day after Attorney General William Barr released the 448-page report detailing Mueller's findings from his probe into the 2016 election and the Trump campaign as well as his conclusion that Congress may probe potential obstruction of justice.
Mueller's report details various instances in which White House aides acted to protect the president and themselves by ignoring certain directives from Trump involving probes around his campaign and administration.
"Reading the report is a sobering revelation of how far we have strayed from the aspirations and principles of the founders," Romney said Friday.
While the report found no collusion between Russia and the Trump campaign, it went into extensive detail about Russian efforts to interfere in the 2016 presidential election, including documenting "numerous links" and conversations between Trump campaign officials and Moscow.
"Although ... the Campaign expected it would benefit electorally from information stolen and released through Russian efforts, the investigation did not establish that members of the Trump Campaign conspired or coordinated with the Russian government in its election interference activities," Mueller wrote.
Romney, in his statement Friday, said that he was "appalled" that members of the Trump campaign would welcome help from Russian officials.
"I am appalled that, among other things, fellow citizens working in a campaign for president welcomed help from Russia-including information that had been illegally obtained; that none of them acted to inform American law enforcement," Romney said.
Romney's pushback against the behavior of Trump and White House aides described in Mueller's report comes as Senate Republicans, who are scattered around the country because of the two-week holiday recess, have largely stopped short of weighing in on the details of the report.
Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Thursday that he would be "carefully reviewing" the report.
And Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), the chairman of the Senate Judiciary Committee, used his initial statement on the report to praise Barr, who has become the focus of Democratic ire over his handling of Mueller's findings.
Romney added Friday that it was "good news that there was insufficient evidence" to charge Trump with conspiring with Russia during the 2016 election or obstructing justice.
"The alternative would have taken us through a wrenching process with the potential for constitutional crisis," he said. "The business of government can move on."