President Trump took aim at Sen. Mitt Romney (R-Utah) for invoking his Mormon faith when explaining his reason to vote to convict the president on one of two House-passed impeachment charges brought against him during the Senate trial earlier this month.
“I did absolutely nothing wrong,” Trump asserted during an interview with Geraldo Rivera released on Thursday. “Everybody knew it. Romney knew it too, by the way. You know that was a disgrace and he knew it.”
“He was going to vote with us. Everyone was saying, ‘He’s good,’ ‘He’s good.’ Then he went into a cage … an interview with, your friend, Chris Wallace, and nobody knew what the interview was about,” he went on, referring to an interview Romney gave to Fox News before he delivered a speech from the Senate floor announcing his decision to vote to convict Trump earlier this month, according to Deseret News.
Trump then knocked Romney for citing his religion when explaining his decision to vote to convict the president of abuse of power.
“They did reports that he [Romney] brought up his religion very seldom, and all of a sudden he brought up his religion. When did you hear him bring up his religion?” the president asked Rivera during the interview.
“Look, I got 52-and-a-half votes out of 53. I got 52-and-a-half. I guess if it was the religion, he should have voted for the other half. You know, he voted on one [article] positively and the other negatively,” he continued.
“He should have probably if it was just the religion, should have voted [the same way] on both if you think about it,” he added.
Romney’s office did not immediately respond to a request for comment from The Hill.
The Senate, where Republicans hold the majority, voted earlier this month to acquit Trump of the charges brought against him in two-House passed articles of impeachment, which accused him of abuse of power and obstruction of Congress for his dealings in the Ukraine.
Romney was the only Republican senator to vote to convict Trump on an article of impeachment.
In remarks from the Senate floor explaining his vote to convict Trump just hours ahead of the a vote in the Senate, Romney pointed to his religion, saying then: “I swore an oath before God to exercise impartial justice.”
“I am profoundly religious. My faith is at the heart of who I am. I take an oath before God as enormously consequential,” he also said, adding: “Does anyone seriously believe that I would consent to these consequences other than from an inescapable conviction that my oath before God demanded it of me?”
Trump caught headlines last week after making an apparent swipe at Romney over the comments while delivering remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast last week.
“I don’t like people who use their faith as justification for doing what they know is wrong,” he said at the event.