In a series of tweets on Sunday evening, Mr Bernstein, 76, listed 21 GOP senators who he claimed had expressed concern to him over Mr Trump’s presidency.
The journalist tweeted: “I'm not violating any pledge of journalistic confidentiality in reporting this: 21 Republican Sens–in convos w/ colleagues, staff members, lobbyists, W House aides–have repeatedly expressed extreme contempt for Trump and his fitness to be POTUS.”
He added: “The 21 GOP Senators who have privately expressed their disdain for Trump are: Portman, Alexander, Sasse, Blunt, Collins, Murkowski, Cornyn, Thune, Romney, Braun, Young, Tim Scott, Rick Scott, Rubio, Grassley, Burr, Toomey, McSally, Moran, Roberts, Shelby.
I'm not violating any pledge of journalistic confidentially in reporting this: 21 Republican Sens–in convos w/ colleagues, staff members, lobbyists, W. House aides–have repeatedly expressed extreme contempt for Trump & his fitness to be POTUS. (1/3)
— Carl Bernstein (@carlbernstein) November 23, 2020
“With few exceptions, their craven public silence has helped enable Trump’s most grievous conduct—including undermining and discrediting the US electoral system.”
Mitt Romney, Pat Toomey, Lisa Murkowski and Ben Sasse have all criticised Mr Trump for refusing to concede 3 November’s election to President-elect Joe Biden and for filing multiple lawsuits in several swing states after falsely claiming voter fraud.
While Texas senator John Cornyn has criticised President Trump for refusing to give intelligence briefings to Mr Biden as part of the White House transition.
However, most of the senators listed by Mr Bernstein stayed silent during Mr Trump’s presidency and after he recently baselessly claimed that he won 3 November’s election.
Reporting for the Washington Post in 1974, Mr Bernstein exposed the Watergate scandal alongside Bob Woodward, which led to former president Richard Nixon’s resignation.
The journalist recently claimed that he is much more concerned by Mr Trump than he was by Nixon, because the president is still refusing to concede the election.
During an appearance on CNN last week, he said: “Nixon left — Republicans convinced him to go, and he did.”
The journalist added: “We are watching ... the final days of the mad king, and what he is attempting to do to overturn constitutional rule in this country, our constitutional traditions, our democratic traditions of fair elections.”
Mr Bernstein also named 15 of the senators listed on Sunday and claimed that they were “happy” to see President-elect Joe Biden win this year’s presidential election.
“Many if not most of these individuals, from what I have been told, were happy to see Donald Trump defeated in this election as long as the Senate could be controlled by the Republicans.”
After the journalist criticised Mr Trump in September, the former president retaliated, calling Mr Bernstein a “total nut job”.