Donald Trump May Be Trying To Keep Mitt Romney Out Of Sentate

Aaron Brown
December 6, 2017

Hatch joined Trump on a visit Monday to Salt Lake City.

Romney has been preparing to run for Hatch's seat on the long-held assumption that the 83-year-old would retire, according to Politico.

"Whether it's confirming judges, passing tax reform or accomplishing any part of his agenda, Hatch is a key player in getting anything done", Hatch spokesman Matt Whitlock said late Sunday.

According to three White House officials, Trump will be making a nine-hour round trip journey on Air Force One with Hatch.

Romney has been considering a Senate run for months, but he may only seek for the GOP nomination if Hatch declines to run for another term.

Romney, 70, is viewed as a virtual lock to win if he chooses to run for the Senate seat (and Hatch doesn't), with hypothetical polls showing he'd beat his potential Democratic opponent in the heavily Republican, heavily Mormon state by an increasingly huge margin.

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Romney has reportedly been mulling a Senate bid in Utah for some time, taking steps after the new year and last summer to up his presence in the Utah political scene.

"Orrin, I really hope you will consider running again", Trump reportedly told the seven-term senator in a phone call in October.

Trump praised Hatch on Monday as "a true fighter" during a joint appearance in Utah, where the president signed proclamations scaling back two sprawling national monuments. "His promises are as worthless as a degree from Trump University". "He gets a free ride to the White House and all we get is a lousy hat", he added.

Romney fiercely criticized Trump during last year's campaign and came to personify the "Never Trump" movement for a time.

According to the Washington Examiner, former Trump adviser and Breitbart chairman Steve Bannon - who was previously recruiting far-right candidates to challenge Hatch in a primary - is now considering endorsing the incumbent senator for re-election.

"Whether Romney would maintain his critiques if he landed in Washington is a matter of some debate; sources close to him told the Atlantic that he would consider toning it down, "at least at first", and would focus instead on "[using] his status as an elder statesman in the rally congressional Republicans around conservative legislative initiatives".

Other reports by Free-Prsite

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