Mitt Romney has been operating a fake Twitter account under the pseudonym Pierre Delecto, and using it to criticize President Donald Trump. Romney admitted that he has the account in an interview with the Atlantic on Sunday, and it was not long before social media sleuths found it. Now, Romney himself is facing mockery.
Romney was the subject of a lengthy profile piece published by The Atlantic on Sunday. The interview framed Romney as a more grounded, level-headed kind of Republican, juxtaposed with the president. However, the effect was greatly diminished after Romney mentioned his secret Twitter account, and readers found it.
Romney and his interviewer, McKay Coppins, were discussing some of the president's personal attacks on him, including the hashtag "IMPEACH MITT ROMNEY," which President Trump posted online a few weeks ago. Romney said that he did not want to "take the bait" on that particular occasion, but he was not surprised either.
I’m hearing that the Great People of Utah are considering their vote for their Pompous Senator, Mitt Romney, to be a big mistake. I agree! He is a fool who is playing right into the hands of the Do Nothing Democrats! #IMPEACHMITTROMNEY— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) October 5, 2019
"That's kind of what he does," Romney said.
He then reportedly confessed to having a secret Twitter account, retrieving an iPad so that he could reference some of his online activity.
"I won't give you the name of it," he said, adding: "I'm following 668 people."
Romney dropped other clues too, listing some of the people he follows. President Trump, he said, was not among them.
"He tweets so much," he said. Romney reportedly even compared the president to his young niece who over-shares on Instagram. "I love her, but it's like, ah, it's too much."
After the report was published, reporters from Slate identified Pierre Delecto as Romney's possible account, since it matched his description. Coppins reportedly called Romney on the phone for confirmation, to which the Senator said: "c'est moi."
Romney has since made his secret account protected, meaning people who are not approved followers cannot read his posts or see his other activity. At the time of the Slate report, the account had just eight followers. At the time of this writing, it has over 1,000.
From the looks of it, the account was used mostly to participate in other conversations, not post original material. Romney could be seen jumping into the replies to one of President Trump's tweets on Oct. 9, responding to another respondent.
"John, agree on Trump's awful decision, but what could the Senate do to stop it?" he asked.
It is also notable that the account has been active since the summer of 2011, when Romney was running for president against Barack Obama. This implies that, even before President Trump's unconventional use of Twitter changed politics altogether, Romney was looking into the trenches of social media discourse.
Romeny is still being dragged for his fake account, among other things. So far, however, it looks like Pierre Delecto is here to stay.