Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney announced on Friday morning that he is running for a Utah Senate seat.
In an online video, “I have decided to run for United States Senate because I believe I can help bring Utah’s values and Utah’s lessons to Washington. Utah is a better model for Washington that Washington is for Utah,” Romney says in the ad.
“Given all that America faces, we feel that his is the right time to serve our state and our country.”
Romney was rumored to be mulling a run for the seat and expectations increased after Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) announced he would not run for re-election, leaving Romney without a challenger for the Republican nomination.
Romney, the 2012 Republican presidential nominee, has been a critic of President Trump during the campaign, and moderate Republicans hope that he serve as a foil to Trump.
In early 2016, Romney gave a speech blasting Trump as a “phony” and a “fraud” who Hillary Clinton would beat.
“His promises are as worthless as a degree from Trump University. He’s playing the American people for suckers: He gets a free ride to the White House and all we get is a lousy hat.”
That speech kicked of a spat between the Trump and Romney that lasted through the campaign although there appeared to be a thaw after the election when Romney considered as a candidate for Secretary of State.
Sources close to Romney say they believe Romney will support Trump when he agrees with policies, and make his voice heard when he disagrees with the president and Republicans.