After serving as senator for 42 years, Sen. Orrin Hatch of the Republican party, has finally bowed out as the longest serving lawmaker.
He announced his retirement in a video statement via Twitter on Tuesday.
“I was an amateur boxer in my youth and I brought that fighting spirit to Washington,” Hatch said.
“But every good boxer knows when to hang up the gloves. After much prayer and deliberation with family and friends I have decided to retire at the end of this term.”
The resignation of the 83-year- came amid widespread speculation that former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney could run for Hatch’s Senate seat.
According to US media reports, Orrin Hatch was under constant pressure by US President Donald Trump because it was assumed Hatch would seek re-election, blocking the way for the return of fellow Republican and former presidential candidate Mitt Romney.
The veteran US senator decided to retire just weeks after Trump signed a massive tax overhaul bill, legislation that capped Hatch’s long career. Hatch actively assisted in the writing of the tax plan as chair of the Senate Finance Committee
President Donald J. Trump has congratulated the senator through a tweet on Wednesday.
“Congratulations to Senator Orrin Hatch on an absolutely incredible career. He has been a tremendous supporter, and I will never forget the (beyond kind) statements he has made about me as President. He is my friend and he will be greatly missed in the U.S. Senate!’’
The senator also played a key role in reducing the size of the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments in the US state of Utah.