Utah's Hatch to retire, opening door to possible Romney run

Utah's Hatch to retire, opening door to possible Romney run

"I've always been a fighter; I was an amateur boxer in my youth, and i've brought that fighting spirit with me to Washington. Although I will miss serving you in the Senate, I look forward to spending more time with family, especially my sweet wife, Elaine, whose unwavering love and support made all of this possible".

Hatch's retirement opens the door for Republican Mitt Romney to run for his seat, as has been rumoured in recent weeks.

Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, a vocal critic of President Donald Trump, could be poised for a political comeback. And the president used a speech in Salt Lake City to say that he hoped Mr. Hatch would "continue to serve your state and your country in the Senate for a very long time to come".

That is in part because Mr. Hatch had privately told Mr. Romney he was not sure he was ready to leave a seat he has held since 1977 and White House officials did all they could to nudge him into another campaign.

Amid earlier speculation about Hatch's plans, the Utah senator stepped up to defend Romney, a fellow Mormon.

Late a year ago, Hatch also found himself in a heated debate with Democratic Sen.

The senator returned the favor at the White House when Trump signed the tax measure, calling him "one heck of a leader".

Kim Jong Un says North Korea completed its nuclear force in 2017
The North often lashes out at the annual military drills between the United States and South Korea , which the allies describe as defensive in nature.

During the tumultuous special election for Senate in Alabama, Romney also took sides against Trump and his endorsement of the highly controversial Roy Moore.

After the election, Romney submitted himself as a candidate to be secretary of state in an excruciatingly public interview process.

Brown, a liberal firebrand, said people know Republicans want to help the rich because it's "in their DNA". Hatch is the president pro tempore of the Senate, as well as the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee.

In the statement announcing his decision not to run again, Hatch cited work with the disadvantaged among his accomplishments, including helping create the Americans with Disabilities Act, expanding children's health insurance and expanding use of generic drugs.

But as the president prodded Hatch to stay, voices in his home state were urging him to go.

No matter who will replace Hatch, his decision to retire has broader implications, given his chairmanship of the important Finance committee and his seniority on other committees. He withdrew after only winning 1 percent of the vote in the Iowa caucuses.

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