Former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney visited Chicago Wednesday to promote U.S. Sen. Mark Kirk’s re-election campaign.
“It’s essential that we have a Republican Senate to keep the Senate and keep America from going off the rails,” Romney told reporters during a news conference at the Merchandise Mart.
Both Romney and Kirk said they would not support presidential nominee Donald Trump. Kirk has said he’ll write-in former CIA Director David Petraeus. Romney repeated he won’t vote for Trump or Hillary Clinton.
“I joke that I might write my wife’s name in, but I’ll be looking at other people running more seriously in the coming days,” Romney said.
Kirk said he and Romney share another similarity: both have won in states that tend to favor Democrats.
“If I was a standard Republican, I wouldn’t be with a F-minus record from the NRA,” Kirk said.
When asked about recent polls that show Kirk trailing U.S. Rep. Tammy Duckworth, D-Hoffman Estates, Kirk said he has historically trailed challengers until the end.
“News of my political death has been way too early,” said Kirk, misquoting the famous line, “Reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.”
Tony Arnold covers Illinois politics for WBEZ. Follow him @tonyjarnold.