Orrin Hatch

Utah’s Biggest Newspaper Tells Hatch to Retire

The Salt Lake Tribune slammed Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) in an editorial for “his utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power.”

The last time the senator was up for re-election, in 2012, he promised that it would be his last campaign. That was enough for many likely successors, of both parties, to stand down, to let the elder statesman have his victory tour and to prepare to run for an open seat in 2018.

Clearly, it was a lie. Over the years, Hatch stared down a generation or two of highly qualified political leaders who were fully qualified to take his place, Hatch is now moving to run for another term — it would be his eighth — in the Senate. Once again, Hatch has moved to freeze the field to make it nigh unto impossible for any number of would-be senators to so much as mount a credible challenge. That’s not only not fair to all of those who were passed over. It is basically a theft from the Utah electorate.

Has Trump Persuaded Orrin Hatch to Block Romney?

McKay Coppins: “After months of quietly laying the groundwork for his own retirement, the 83-year-old Utah senator has signaled to Republican allies in recent weeks that he’s having second thoughts about leaving office when his term ends next year. Interviews with 10 people familiar with the situation—some of whom requested anonymity to speak candidly—suggest that President Trump’s efforts to convince Hatch to seek reelection have influenced the senator’s thinking.”

“This perceived about-face by the seven-term senator has enraged loyalists to Mitt Romney, who had been planning to run for Hatch’s seat (at the senator’s urging no, less). Meanwhile, many Utah Republicans have grown impatient and aggravated with Hatch as he repeatedly postpones announcing his reelection decision.”

Trump Moves to Block Romney from Senate

President Trump “is going all out to persuade seven-term Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch to seek reelection — a push aimed in no small part at keeping the president’s longtime nemesis, Mitt Romney, out of the Senate. Romney has been preparing to run for Hatch’s seat on the long-held assumption that the 83-year-old would retire,” Politico reports.

“Yet Hatch, the longest-serving Republican senator in history, is now refusing to rule out another campaign — a circumstance Romney’s infuriated inner circle blames squarely on the president. Their suspicions are warranted: Trump has sounded off to friends about how he doesn’t like the idea of a Senator Romney.”

Hatch Tells Friends He Intends to Retire

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) “has privately told allies in Utah that he is planning to retire at the end of his term next year, and if he does, Mitt Romney intends to run for his seat,” The Atlantic reports.

“Sources close to both men said plans have already been set in motion for Hatch to retire and for Romney to run, but they cautioned that the timing of the announcements has not yet been finalized, and that either man could still change his mind. They spoke on condition of anonymity, because the plans are not yet public, and the subject is sensitive to Hatch.”

Hatch Says Tax Reform Will Be Harder Than Health Care

Senate Finance Committee chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) told CNBC that tax reform will take a lot of cooperation between the Democrats and Republicans.

He added that once the bill reaches the Senate floor there will be “doubling and tripling of the ideas of people who have been waiting for a long time… to put their own ideas and imprint on it.”

Said Hatch: “It’s much harder than health care.”

Hatch Gives Lesson on ‘Shooting Wads’

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) used an interesting phrase in Politico to illustrate how Republicans were moving away from their failed health care bill.

Said Hatch: “We’re not going back to health care. We’re in tax now. As far as I’m concerned, they shot their wad on health care and that’s the way it is. I’m sick of it.”

After an uproar on social media, Hatch tweeted out “a valuable jargon lesson on ‘wads’ and the shooting of them.” He claims that “to shoot one’s wad” means “to do all that one can do,” and is a reference to the material used to plug old guns.

Hatch Says Senate Too Divided to Take Up Health Care

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) told Reuters “that senators for now are too divided to keep working on healthcare overhaul legislation and that he and other senior Republicans will take that message to the White House.”

President Donald Trump has been urging lawmakers not to drop the matter, despite a series of failed votes last week.

Said Hatch: “There’s just too much animosity and we’re too divided on healthcare.”

Hatch Says Wife Doesn’t Want Him to Run Again

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) told KUTV that he intends to run for re-election in 2018 but said his wife’s trepidation is giving him pause.

“The 83-year-old Hatch said he suspects he’ll need to decide before the end of the year, but said he’s not putting any hard timeline on it.”

Said Hatch: “Right now, I intend to run. But you know, Elaine is not real enthusiastic about it, which causes me to pause a little bit. But, I’m chairman of the finance committee, the most powerful committee in the whole Congress and we’re doing work that has never been done before and that needs to be done.”

Hatch Warns Obamacare Repeal May Be Difficult

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) warned that efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act in the Senate might be complicated because once the public “is on the dole, they’ll take every dime they can,” CNN reports.

Said Hatch: “Let’s face it, once you get them on the dole, they’ll take every dime they can. We’ve got to find some way of getting things under control or this country and your future is going to be gone.”

Hatch Will Run Again for Re-Election

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT) told CNN he “is planning to run for re-election next year, abandoning his plans to quit the chamber after four decades of service.”

“The Utah Republican — who promised in 2012 that his current term would be his last — said he has changed his mind at this time, partially because he’s been getting encouragement from President Donald Trump and top Republicans to run again.”