A lot of powerful people in Donald Trump's inner circle don't want Mitt Romney to be the president-elect's secretary of state.
Although Trump has apparently told aides that Romney "looks the part" and would do a fine job in the role, many in the Republican establishment are dismayed with Romney's harsh denunciations of Trump, and wish he would appoint someone more genuinely loyal. This includes Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway.
According to a report from The New York Times on Thursday, Trump's chief strategist Stephen Bannon is also opposed to Romney's selection because of the latter's characterization of Trump as a "phony" and a "fraud" and are concerned that Romney would turn the State Department into a rogue agency.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich made his thoughts on Romney known during an interview with Fox News' Tucker Carlson on Tuesday. After pointing out that Romney had once wanted to be president himself, he asked “to what degree would Romney, once he became secretary of state, represent himself?” In addition, Gingrich questioned "to what extent would he actually represent the kind of tough-minded ‘America first’ policies that Trump has campaigned on?”
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Similarly, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee questioned whether Romney is worthy of representing President-elect Trump in other countries given his earlier harsh rhetoric.
“It would be a real insult to all those Donald Trump voters who worked really hard,” Huckabee explained on "Fox and Friends" on Wednesday. “When you go after a person who is the nominee of your party, who has been duly nominated by the voters . . . you’re savaging the voters. You’re not just savaging Donald Trump.”
The New York Times also pointed out that Conway defended her tweet by pointing out that the grass-roots supporters for Trump seem most outraged "not against something he said, but something he may do." She also wrote that being "loyal" was the most important quality for a secretary of state.