UNITED STATES: Former presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who serves as a US Senator, has urged Donald Trump and Joe Biden to step aside and create space for a younger generation of politicians.
He made these comments while addressing the media regarding his own plan to retire.
He stated that he opted not to seek re-election because he believed it was the time “for a new generation of leaders”.
Romney, aged 76, boasts a two-decade-long history in American politics, which encompasses his role as Massachusetts governor.
In recent times, the prominent Republican figure has emerged as a vocal critic of both Biden and Trump.
He will continue to hold his Senate seat until the conclusion of his term in January 2025.
In a video released on Wednesday afternoon, where he announced his decision not to seek re-election, Romney hinted that his age influenced his decision.
He stated, “At the end of another term, I’d be in my mid-80s. Frankly, it’s time for a new generation of leaders. While I’m not running for re-election, I’m not retiring from the fight”.
Later on, he told reporters that he would want to see young people vote, run for office, and join the Republican Party, adding that it would be “well served” for both parties to have elected candidates from younger generations.
As of now, both Biden and Trump are the leading contenders for their respective parties in the 2024 presidential race.
Romney also drew a distinction between himself and certain fellow Republicans, asserting that he represents a “small” and “wise” faction of the party that prioritises policy objectives.
He contends that Republican lawmakers who align with Trump are primarily focused on seeking retribution and addressing perceived grievances.
In the 2012 presidential election, Romney was the Republican nominee but ultimately lost to the incumbent, Barack Obama.
Six years later, he secured a Senate seat in Utah. Before that, he made an unsuccessful attempt to secure the Republican nomination in 2008 and served as the governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007.
In the year 2020, he cast his vote to convict Trump in his initial impeachment trial, marking the first instance of a senator voting to convict a member of their own party. He stood alone among Republicans in doing so.
The following year, he once again voted to convict the former president during his second impeachment trial, which followed the events of the January 6, 2021, riot at the US Capitol.
In Romney’s absence, it is highly likely that his Senate seat will be contested by several candidates who support Trump and are viewed as potential contenders.