WASHINGTON – Mitt Romney, the Republican Party’s presidential nominee in the 2012 election and current U.S. Senator representing Utah, announced Wednesday he will not seek reelection as a senator next year.

Along with his announcement came some critical comments about fellow GOP colleagues, including U.S. Sens. Josh Hawley (Missouri), Ted Cruz (Texas) and J.D. Vance (Ohio).

Hawley was one of several U.S. Senators who objected to certifying results from the 2020 presidential election. Thousands stormed the U.S. Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021 as Congress met to certify results in the election.

Romney, after announcing his plans to not seek reelection next year, revisited some previous comments in which he called it “disingenuous” for Senators to challenge election results. When first asked about Hawley and Cruz, Romney offered these comments

“I really do believe many of the people in leadership, meaning elected officials, who claimed 2020 was a stolen election, that we need to recount the ballots, other than through the normal judicial process, I think they knew better,” said Romney. “I have expressed that numerous times. It’s not a surprise.”

“Democracy requires belief and credibility in elections,” Romney continued. “So people who are casting aspersions on our election process are threatening one of the bases of our very foundation.”

According to CNN, Romney expressed a similar sentiment to his “they knew better” remarks in an upcoming biography. The biography “Romney: A Reckoning” was written by McKay Coppins and also announced Wednesday amid Romney’s announcement.

Per one excerpt of the book cited by CNN, Romney was again critical of Hawley. “‘They know better! Josh Hawley is one of the smartest people in the Senate, if not the smartest, and Ted Cruz could give him a run for his money,’” read one excerpt published by CNN via The Atlantic.

Hawley reportedly responded to these comments in an audio clip shared on YouTube page @ForbesBreakingNews. “That is probably the nicest thing he has ever said about me to the public,” said Hawley. “You should see what he says about me in private. I did like the part where he said I was smarter than Ted Cruz, so I would say on the balance, he was probably like 47% accurate.”

In the upcoming book, Romney seemed a bit more critical of Ohio U.S. Sen. J.D. Vance and his priorities, stating ’I don’t know that I can disrespect someone more than J.D. Vance.’”

Romney expects to serve in his current office through the end of his term in January 2025.