Mitt Romney: War with Iran is 'not going to happen'

Mitt Romney: War with Iran is 'not going to happen'
© Greg Nash

Sen. Mitt RomneyWillard (Mitt) Mitt RomneyOcasio-Cortez jabs 'plutocratic' late entrants to 2020 field Jon Huntsman expected to run for governor in Utah Trump Jr's 'Triggered' debuts at No. 1 on NY Times bestseller list MORE (R-Utah) said in an interview that aired Sunday that he believes war with Iran is "not going to happen."

He said on CNN's "State of the Union" that he doesn't believe President TrumpDonald John TrumpButtigieg surges ahead of Iowa caucuses Biden leads among Latino Democrats in Texas, California Kavanaugh hailed by conservative gathering in first public speech since confirmation MORE or his hawkish national security adviser, John BoltonJohn BoltonTrump files to dismiss lawsuit from Bolton aide on impeachment testimony Scarborough: Trump is either 'an agent of Russia' or 'a useful idiot' Are Democrats building a collapsible impeachment? MORE, want war with Tehran. 

“I don’t believe for a minute that either the president or John Bolton…has any interest in going to the Middle East and going to war. That’s just not going to happen. There’s no interest in doing that,”  said Romney, a frequent critic of Trump who sits on the Senate foreign relations committee. 

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Tensions between the U.S. and Iran have been building since Trump withdrew the U.S. from the Obama-era nuclear pact in 2018 because he said the agreement did not adequately address Tehran’s influence in the region or its missile programs.

Last week, Trump dismissed a report saying that his team was preparing to send 120,000 troops to the Middle East, but said he would send more if he had to. He also said he did not want to go to war with Iran. 

The Washington Post reported that Trump was frustrated with advisers such as Bolton and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo over their hardline positions on Iran and wanted to speak leaders in Tehran himself.

An Iranian military official said last week that the U.S. was "holding a gun" at Iran while calling for talks. 

As the hostilities escalated, the State Department last Wednesday moved to evacuate non-emergency personnel from Iran's neighbor, Iraq.