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The University of Utah's Independent Student Voice

The Daily Utah Chronicle

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The Daily Utah Chronicle

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Sen. Mitt Romney Will Not Seek Another Senate Term

It’s too early to tell who the front-runner is for the open Senate seat in 2024.
Sen.+Mitt+Romney+speaking+next+to+Rick+Larsen+during+the+Sutherland+Institutes+2023+Congressional+Series+at+Hinckley+Institute+of+Politics+on+the+University+of+Utah+campus+in+Salt+Lake+City%2C+Monday%2C+Aug.+21%2C+2023.+%28Photo+by+Marco+Lozzi+%7C+The+Daily+Utah+Chronicle%29
Marco Lozzi
Sen. Mitt Romney speaking next to Rick Larsen during the Sutherland Institute’s 2023 Congressional Series at Hinckley Institute of Politics on the University of Utah campus in Salt Lake City, Monday, Aug. 21, 2023. (Photo by Marco Lozzi | The Daily Utah Chronicle)

 

In a statement released Wednesday morning, Sen. Mitt Romney announced he would not seek a second senate term — likely marking the end of his political career.

“Frankly, it’s time for a new generation of leaders,” he said in his statement.  

If re-elected, Romney would end his next term in his mid-eighties. 

Nationally, Romney’s contributions included the bipartisan infrastructure law, a comprehensive China strategy process, religious liberty protections, a compromise gun safety law, the Electoral Count Act reform and emergency COVID relief funding

In Utah, Romney focused on getting funding for wildfire prevention, water infrastructure, removal of uranium findings in Moab, highway and transit infrastructure and federal studies to save the Great Salt Lake

Romney criticized former President Donald Trump and President Joe Biden.

“We face critical challenges — mounting national debt, climate change and the ambitious authoritarians of Russia and China,” he said. “Neither President Biden nor former President Trump are leading their party to confront them.”

Romney will continue to serve on the Senate until January 2025. 

“While I’m not running for re-election, I’m not retiring from the fight,” he said. “It is a profound honor to serve Utah and the nation, and I thank you for giving me the opportunity to do so.” 

Romney was the Republican nominee for president in 2012, where he lost to former President Barack Obama. 

Jason Perry, vice president for government relations at the University of Utah, said despite Romney’s stepping down, he will still be a prominent voice not only in the political sphere but in policy discussion as well. 

But, Perry added, the talks about age in Washington D.C. and how it relates to effective leadership have an impact on Romney’s decision. 

“But, it was a decision that no one else was going to make for him and he waited for the time when it was clear that it was his decision, not based on any other factors but his own desire,” Perry said. 

The announcement opens the door for a lot of potential candidates in 2024. 

Speaker of the Utah House of Representatives Brad Wilson is running for Senate and is telling everyone to stay tuned. 

Riverton Mayor Trent Staggs is also running. In a flurry of reposts on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, Staggs and his supporters called Romney a “RINO,” or a Republican in Name Only. 

Romney considered a moderate Republican by most, was the only Republican to vote against Trump in his first impeachment and one of seven to vote to convict him in the second.  

Attorney General Sean Reyes announced he would not be running for Senate, but will be endorsing a candidate in the next few days. 

In a press conference with reporters in Washington D.C., Romney said he’d like colleges and universities to insist that young people vote and make it easier for people to vote by providing voting booths. 

“One of the things I intend to do is going on college campuses and speaking on college campuses to encourage young people to actually run for office and vote,” he said.  

Utah College Republicans Chair Ryan Smith said he is grateful for the service Romney has provided to the state of Utah. 

“As a state, this provides us a great opportunity to send a conservative back to D.C. to fight for the constitution and our state,” Smith said.

 

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@vanessamwrites

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About the Contributors
Vanessa Hudson
Vanessa Hudson, Editor in Chief
Vanessa is from Grand Junction, Colorado. She's a junior majoring in communication with an emphasis in journalism and minoring in modern dance and political science. She is passionate about what she reports on, and she usually winds up writing about local politics and issues. When Vanessa isn't writing, you can find her trying out some new choreography, listening to public radio or watching Marvel and Star Wars movies.
Marco Lozzi
Marco Lozzi, Photographer
Born in Texas and raised by Italian parents, Marco Lozzi grew up with two vastly different cultures. Now a sophomore at the U, he is majoring in communication with a journalism emphasis while also minoring in photography and Italian. He joined the Chrony to gain experience working as a photojournalist for a larger entity. When he's not taking or editing photos, he can be found hitting the slopes, napping, or making pasta.

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