I find it funny how everyone now loves Utah Sen. Mitt Romney because he has become one of the louder voices against President Donald Trump.
McKay Coppins wrote a loving profile of Romney in The Atlantic, which also included the senator groaning about Trump’s use of Twitter.
Except…it seems like Romney enjoys Twitter more than he let on.
They manage that tension in different ways: While the president spent a too-online Saturday earlier this month unloading on Twitter—launching #IMPEACHMITTROMNEY into the canon of viral Trump taunts—Romney enjoyed a quiet afternoon picking apples with his grandkids in Utah and refusing to take the bait. When I met him in his office a couple of weeks later, I asked if the Twitter insults bothered him.
“That’s kind of what he does,” Romney said with a shrug, and then got up to retrieve an iPad from his desk. He explained that he uses a secret Twitter account—“What do they call me, a lurker?”—to keep tabs on the political conversation. “I won’t give you the name of it,” he said, but “I’m following 668 people.” Swiping at his tablet, he recited some of the accounts he follows, including journalists, late-night comedians (“What’s his name, the big redhead from Boston?”), and athletes. Trump was not among them. “He tweets so much,” Romney said, comparing the president to one of his nieces who overshares on Instagram. “I love her, but it’s like, Ah, it’s too much.” (After this story was published, Slate identified a Twitter account using the name Pierre Delecto that seemed to match the senator’s description of his lurker account. When I spoke to Romney on the phone Sunday night, his only response was, “C’est moi.”)
Ashley Feinberg at Slate dug through the Twitter account of Allie Romney Critchlow, Mitt’s oldest grandchild. She has 481 followers, which made the task easier for Feinberg.
Feinberg found @qaws9876. Mitt has protected the account.
When Fienberg wrote her piece, the account only had eight followers. Now it has 1,173 followers.
Feinberg managed to catch the people Romney follows before he locked the account. They include people like Robert Murdoch, Bill Kristol, Matt Schapp. He follows those you expect like his children, former aides, and reporters who covered his 2012 presidential campaign. It seems like Romney enjoys a laugh because he follows parody accounts of him, but also quite a few fan accounts.
Romney only tweeted responses to tweets The ones from this year include a response to Sen. Dick Durbin (D-IL). Others include pushbacks to articles “defending Mitt Romney’s honor.”
Then Feinberg posted a few tweets Romney liked on the platform. He enjoyed quite a few tweets from George Conway, Kellyanne Conway’s husband, who regularly bashes Trump. Another tweet supported “an invocation of the 25th amendment.”
Obviously Romney wanted us to find his secret account. Otherwise, he would not have mentioned it to Coppins let alone give the number of people he follows. That made it easy for Feinberg to find the account.
It makes you wonder how many politicians have these so-called burner accounts.DONATE
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