What Does RINO Mean? Trump Calls Mitt Romney 'Terrible Presidential Candidate' After Senator Tests Negative for COVID-19

President Donald Trump criticized fellow Republican Mitt Romney on Wednesday, calling the Utah Senator a fake member of the party after he tested negative for coronavirus.

Trump labeled Romney a "RINO" or "Republican in Name Only," which is a criticism long used by conservatives to accuse other GOP members of being too liberal. Over the weekend, the president used a White House Coronavirus Task Force daily briefing to facetiously offer Romney condolences for self-quarantining over potential coronavirus infection fears. The two Republicans have had a tumultuous relationship dating back to Romney's failed run against President Barack Obama in the 2012 election. But Romney's lone Republican Senate vote to impeach the president earlier this year has led to Trump frequently lashing out against the Utah senator.

"This is really great news! I am so happy I can barely speak. He may have been a terrible presidential candidate and an even worse U.S. Senator, but he is a RINO, and I like him a lot!" Trump remarked on Twitter, responding to a Breitbart News report that Romney tested negative for coronavirus Tuesday.

Last week, Trump briefly jabbed at a question which noted that several senators had been either quarantined or infected with the coronavirus. Romney and fellow Utah Senator Mike Lee offered to self-quarantine over concerns of exposure to Kentucky GOP Senator Rand Paul, who announced he tested positive for coronavirus. Upon hearing the question from a reporter at the White House, Trump replied, "Romney's in isolation? Gee, that's too bad."

Pressed if he was expressing sarcasm in his quip, Trump replied with a faint smile, "None whatsoever."

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"Thankfully I've tested negative for COVID-19. Nevertheless, guidance from my physician, consistent with the CDC guidelines, requires me to remain in quarantine as the test does not rule out the onset of symptoms during the 14-day period," Romney tweeted on Tuesday after receiving the coronavirus test results.

Paul was the first senator to announce he tested positive for COVID-19 and he penned a brief response in USA Today this week saying he wasn't even showing symptoms when he got tested. Paul instead said the reason he got tested was because he'd recently gone through an operation which removed part of his lung, thus placing him at more risk to the coronavirus than many average, healthy Americans.

The president has said he would support allowing any member of Congress to vote remotely on a temporary basis amid coronavirus pandemic concerns.

Mitt Romney and President Donald Trump
President Donald Trump offered his latest sarcastic coronavirus reference toward Utah Senator Mitt Romney, criticizing the fellow Republican as a fake member of the party. Alex Wong/Getty Images
What Does RINO Mean? Trump Calls Mitt Romney 'Terrible Presidential Candidate' After Senator Tests Negative for COVID-19 | Politics