Washington • Sen. Orrin Hatch says he intends to run for re-election — but he added that a formal decision won't come later this year, and he offered several reasons he still could step aside in 2018, including if his or his wife's health deteriorated.
Hatch, 83 and the longest serving GOP senator in history, told KUTV-Ch. 2 in an interview that he would seek an eighth term in office, offering the strongest indication yet after months of hedging when asked if he would retire after 42 years in Washington.
"Right now, yes, I'm going to run," Hatch told the TV station, though he later clarified that he may take that back if "my wife gets sick, or I get sick, or something like that."
Hatch, who had recently floated the idea of former presidential candidate Mitt Romney as his successor, also told KUTV that Romney is not going to run. Romney has not commented on Hatch's mention of him as a possible successor.