Utah Republican Sen. Orrin Hatch revealed that if he retires in 2018, Mitt Romney would be a “perfect” candidate to replace him.
Hatch, the longest-serving Republican senator in history, was first elected in 1976. He told National Journal Tuesday that he “might very well consider” retiring if an “outstanding person” were to run.
— Ben Pershing (@benpershing) March 29, 2017
When asked if he had any specific person in mind, Hatch responded, “Well, Mitt Romney would be perfect.” He added that he has reached out to Romney about the idea.
Last February, Romney, the Republican party’s 2012 presidential candidate, did not reject the idea of a run for Hatch’s Senate seat.
“I don’t have any predictions on what I might do. I’m not going to open a door and I’m not going to close a door. All doors are open,” Romney told the Deseret News.
Romney could have competition from other Utah Republicans, however. Other names floated in the past to run for Hatch’s seat include former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz, and 2016 presidential candidate Evan McMullin.