Romney Set to Announce Utah Senate Run on Thursday


Jeff Flake as the president's most vocal thorn in his side from the Republican Party.

According to multiple news outlets, Mitt Romney will formally announce Thursday that he's running for Utah's open U.S. Senate seat.

What makes Romney's expected announcement and desire to occupy a seat in the Senate particularly interesting is his relationship with the man who now occupies the Oval Office. Now with Romney potentially occupying a seat Congress' upper chamber, those tensions between him and the president are sure to resurface.

The former MA governor moved to Utah after losing the 2012 presidential election. Romney is all about legacy and ambition; so to allow a national defeat to be his last act as a politician is not the way Romney rolls. He's reportedly not expected to face stiff competition if he does run. In November 2016, Romney praised Trump's "impressive" transition effort and noted how hard it is to win the presidency.

Romney has not faced the media during that time, and has deflected questions about running when reporters have caught up to him. To Romney, Trump was "a phoney" and "a fraud"; to Trump, Romney was "a dog" who choked against Obama and couldn't close the deal.

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Trump had considered Romney for the position of US secretary of state, but picked former oil executive Rex Tillerson instead. Nothing came of the meetings, and the personal chemistry largely returned to its pre-summit days.

Romney, who was born in MI and served as governor of MA, moved to Utah in 2013 after his unsuccessful 2012 run against former President Obama.

Several reports have indicated that Romney, 70, would run for the Senate if Hatch retired.

Romney would start his first six-year term with more influence than most senators. What will his priorities be? Will he use the Senate floor as a platform to denounce Trump's assault on the free press, his character assassination of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, or his attacks on fellow Republicans whom the president blandishes as disloyal? In December, Romney tweeted that he believed Moore accuser Leigh Corfman and said electing Moore "would be a stain on the GOP and on the nation".