Prominent Utah Paper Says Sen. Hatch Should Quit – Or ‘Voters Should End It For Him’

REUTERS/George Frey

David Krayden Ottawa Bureau Chief
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The Salt Lake Tribune thinks it’s time for Sen. Orrin Hatch to “call it a career.”

In a Monday editorial naming Hatch the “Utahn of the Year,” the Tribune reminded him of his words in 1983 when he told a group of earnest Capitol Hill staffers that politicians should never cling to elected positions:

“You should not fall in love with D.C. Elected politicians shouldn’t stay here too long.”

“If only he had listened to his own advice,” the Tribune then added.

The paper says it is recognizing Hatch for his work as the chairman of the Senate Finance Committee in finalizing the Republican tax cut legislation, his support of dismantling national monuments and his “utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst for power.”

The editors note that “after 42 years, [Hatch] is the longest-serving Republican senator in U.S. history, that he has been a senator from Utah longer than three-fifths of the state’s population has been alive.”

The journal castigates President Donald Trump’s decision to minimize the Grand Staircase-Escalante and Bears Ears national monuments as “anti-environmental, anti-Native American and…anti-business” while being “a favor done in return for Hatch’s support of the president… and of his tax reform plan.”

Ultimately, the paper insists the successful passage of the tax reform bill represents a crowning achievement for Hatch, who has long championed such legislation. So, with his objective achieved, he can justifiably retire.

But even if Hatch disagrees with that assessment, the editors remind the senator how the last time he “was up for re-election, in 2012, he promised that it would be his last campaign.”

The Tribune suggests “it was a lie” because he has made no effort in the past five years to make room for a successor.

‘It would be good for Utah if Hatch, having finally caught the Great White Whale of tax reform, were to call it a career. If he doesn’t, the voters should end it for him,” the editors conclude.

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