Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) remarked on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday that she was “appalled” when Sen. Mitt Romney (R-UT) was booed by GOP delegates during the Republican convention held there over the weekend.
She warned Republicans that if they did not allow for opposing viewpoints, they risk becoming like the Democratic Party that is controlled by the progressive left.
“I was appalled, Mitt Romney is an outstanding senator who serves his state and our country well,” Collins told host Jake Tapper.
The Maine senator went even further to defend Rep. Liz Cheney (R-WY) who is receiving withering criticism from Republicans after she voted to impeach former President Trump following the Jan. 6 Capitol riot: “Liz Cheney is a woman of strength and conscience, and she did what she felt was right, and I salute her for that. We need to be accepting of differences in our party,” Collins contended.
(Video Credit: CNN | State of the Union with Jake Tapper)
“We don’t want to become like too much of the Democratic Party, which has been taken over by the progressive left. We need to have room for a variety of views,” Collins noted.
She stated that the Republican Party’s foundational beliefs include individual freedom, personal responsibility, free markets, and a strong national defense: “Those are the principles that unite us. We are not a party that is led by just one person,” Collins declared.
“There are many prominent upcoming younger men and women in our party who hold great promise for leading us. And I think that all of us who abide by those principles should remember [former President] Ronald Reagan’s admonition to Republicans that a person who agrees with you 70 or 80 percent of the time is your friend, not your enemy,” she admonished.
On Saturday night, when Romney took to the podium to speak he was loudly booed by 2,000 attendees and called a “traitor” and a “communist” as he attempted to address the GOP’s 2021 convention in Utah. He infamously voted twice to impeach Trump, being the only Republican to vote for impeachment the first time around and he was one of seven on the second impeachment attempt.
(Video Credit: Fox 13 News Utah)
“Aren’t you embarrassed?” Romney asked as he was heckled on stage.
“I’m a man who says what he means, and you know I was not a fan of our last president’s character issues,” proclaimed Romney.
“You can boo all you like,” Romney told the attendees. “I’ve been a Republican all of my life. My dad was the governor of Michigan and I was the Republican nominee for president in 2012.”
@ UT State GOP Conv. today Mitt Romney arrived to a harsh boo reception with chants of "shame on you" "traitor" & so on.
He probably will never forget this day!
He is still facing the possibility of being censured today. #GOP #Trump2024 #RINO pic.twitter.com/ZPan1cxes2
— Arturo Morales LLan (@ArturoMoralesll) May 1, 2021
A vote to censure Romney was held following his two impeachment votes but it narrowly failed to pass 798 to 711.
Collins was also the target of a censure effort in March by Maine Republicans because she voted to impeach Trump. That effort failed as well.
By contrast, Sen. Mike Lee received a standing ovation prior to his speech that castigated Democrats and the Biden administration: “Their whole agenda is wrapped up around one idea — unquestionable trust in government,” Lee charged.