Mitt Romney up against state lawmaker in Senate primary

June 26, 2018


SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Mitt Romney will learn Tuesday if he’ll continue the reboot of his political career as voters were deciding a primary in the race for a Utah Senate seat vacated by Orrin Hatch, who is retiring after more than 40 years.

The former GOP presidential candidate has deflected attacks on his onetime criticism of President Donald Trump during the campaign while saying his political clout would help Utah punch above its weight in Washington, D.C.

Romney said in an op-ed published Sunday in The Salt Lake Tribune that the Trump administration’s policies have exceeded his expectations in its first year, but he pledged to “continue to speak out when the president says or does something which is divisive, racist, sexist, anti-immigrant, dishonest or destructive to democratic institutions.”

His opponent, state Rep. Mike Kennedy, says he’s the true local conservative who would work better with Trump. His pitch won over hard-right leaning delegates at the party convention in April but was being put to the test Tuesday among more moderate GOP voters around the state.

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