Five sources who spoke to The Atlantic say Senator Orrin Hatch (R-UT) won't seek reelection in 2018 and Mitt Romney will announce a campaign to take his place.
Sources close to both men said plans have already been set in motion for Hatch to retire and for Romney to run, but they cautioned that the timing of the announcements have not yet been finalized, and that either man could still change his mind. They spoke on condition of anonymity, because the plans are not yet public, and the subject is sensitive to Hatch. Already, though, the expected developments are reshaping the state’s political landscape.
Derek Miller, the CEO of Utah’s World Trade Center who said he was exploring a bid for the seat earlier this year, said the plan for Romney to run had been “reported to me as a ‘done deal.’” He added, “if Romney runs, I will fully support him.”
If this is true, I think it's safe to assume Romney will easily defeat a possible Republican primary opponent, or two, and probably become the state's next senator.
The big question is what kind of senator he would be. The Republican party doesn't need another Trump sycophant, it needs more people who are willing to accept at least some empirical realities.
Yes, senators like Bob Corker and Jeff Flake are still conservatives who will vote accordingly, but that's still better than a Bannonite nationalist. Electing belligerent assholes is very bad for the long-term health of the country.