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The way they were: Trump and Romney in 2012

Posted at 1:53 PM, Mar 03, 2016

Even though Mitt Romney called Donald Trump a "con man" and a "fake" in a Utah speech Thursday, the two men were fawning all over one another just a few years ago.

The former Massachusetts governor and the 2016 Republican presidential front-runner have gone from laying out compliments to slinging criticisms now that the tables have turned.

What Trump said back then:

Trump, back when he was just a real estate mogul and reality-TV star without adding candidate to his list of titles, endorsed GOP nominee Romney for the 2012 election and praised his business savvy, calling it an "honor" to endorse him for president.

"Mitt is tough, he is smart, he is sharp, he is not going to allow bad things to continue to happen to this country we all love. So Governor Romney, go out and get 'em!" Trump said.

Now, Trump has turned to Twitter to slam Romney.

How Romney's reaction has changed

"His promises are as worthless as a degree from Trump University," Romney told the nation Thursday. "He's playing the American public for suckers: He gets a free ride to the White House and all we get is a lousy hat."

Most of Romney's approximately 20-minute address focused on Trump, the odds-on favorite to win the GOP nomination. Romney repeatedly called Trump a liar and called into question his temperament and knowledge of political policies.

"Dishonesty is Donald Trump's hallmark," Romney said. "The only serious policy proposals ... have come from Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio and John Kasich. One of these men should be our nominee."