Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-UT), who will retire from the Senate when his current term ends in 2018, said Wednesday that he would support Mitt Romney to take his place should Romney decide to run.
“I did call him a while back and explored with him what he had on his mind,” Hatch said on Utah Morning News, CNN reported. He added: “I’m hopeful he’ll run, because he would be just fine, and he would certainly be somebody who I think could succeed me and do a good job.”
“We haven’t spoken in the last few days, but if Mitt decides to run, he knows he’ll have my support, but that will be his announcement to make, not mine,” Hatch said.
Hatch, 83, is the longest-serving Republican senator in history. Romney, despite serving as Massachusetts’ governor for four years, has hinted that he might be interested in the Utah Senate seat.
On Tuesday, for example, Romney changed the location of his Twitter profile to Holladay, Utah — where he built a mansion after his 2012 loss to Barack Obama — from Massachusetts. CNN noted he was already registered to vote in the state.