Last updateThu, 02 Apr 2020 1pm


Mitt Romney Running for United States Senate

Mitt RomneyMitt Romney, a former Massachusetts governor and the 2012 Republican presidential candidate, announced that he is running to represent Utah in the United States Senate, on Friday, Feb. 16.

Romney is known both within the state of Utah for his work as chief executive of the organizing committee for the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City, and nationally from his 2012 presidential run, in which he won the state by nearly 50 points.

“Mitt Romney is royalty here in the state of Utah,” Utah’s Lt. Governor Spencer Cox, said in an interview with Vox.

Currently, Romney’s early poll numbers show a lead of about 40 percent points.

“It’s difficult to envision a scenario where Romney does not win the seat in Utah,” said Stephen Chapman, Ph.D., an assistant professor of political science. 

Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, Romney’s running mate in 2012, has endorsed him in a statement on the same day Romney announced his candidacy.

“Our [Republican] party and our country are always better off when Mitt is engaged,” Ryan said on twitter.

 “Utah has a lot to teach the politicians in Washington,” Romney said in his announcement video which he released early morning last Friday.

Likewise, in a pointed quip toward the immigration policies of President Trump, Romney said that “Utah welcomes legal immigrants from around the world,” while “Washington sends immigrants a message of exclusion.”

On Friday, the Senate Majority Leader, Mitch McConnell (R-KY), publicly urged the president to support Romney.

“We don’t want to lose the seat,” McConnell said in an interview with The New York Times, “and this looks like a pretty formidable candidate.”

President Donald Trump has recently endorsed Romney.

 On Monday, Feb. 19, Trump wrote in a tweet that  Romney  “will make a great Senator and worthy successor [of current Utah Senator Orrin Hatch].”

 Utah is a reliably Republican state; the voters have not elected a Democrat to the U.S. Senate since the late 1930s.

“He is running for an already solid red seat following Senator Orrin Hatch’s retirement announcement,” said Chapman.

Moreover, he explained that Romney’s Mormon faith will also be beneficial to him in his campaign.

“With roughly 60 percent of Utahans being of the same faith, it’s a big factor in the race,” he said. Because of their shared faith, Romney becomes more relatable to the voters.

 “Unless he runs a catastrophic campaign, I see Romney easily winning [in the general election] in November,” Chapman said.


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