Salt Lake City, Utah- (ABC4 Utah) – A stunning announcement is shaking up the political landscape in Utah. Representative Jason Chaffetz is not seeking re-election in 2018.
Chaffetz says Washington life is wearing on him. Wednesday, he made it clear he will not be running for any office in 2018, but that doesn’t mean we’ve seen the end of his political career.
Chaffetz says he’s done in Utah’s 3rd Congressional District at the end of his current term.
“It’s good to go out on top. I thinks that’s, get in, serve and get out. I’ve always believed that,” said Chaffetz, (R) Utah.
Chaffetz ascended to national prominence as chair of the powerful House Oversight Committee.
He’s also faced some fierce pressure from democrats who say he isn’t doing his job, and an angry crowd at his most recent town hall meeting.
He says that has nothing to do with his decision.
“In fact, that’s the part I’ll probably miss.”
Chaffetz says it all comes down to family. After serving five terms he doesn’t want to sacrifice more of his time with them.
“We have three kids, two of which are now married, we are soon to be empty nesters, I turned 50 and I’m sleeping on a cot in my office. So, that will get you thinking, what am I really doing,” said Chaffetz.
For now, he plans to transition to the private sector, but he isn’t closing the door on politics all together.
He has long been thought of as a potential candidate for governor in 2020.
“I’ve said in the past that I have been interested in that position, and we’ll see.”
Republicans to watch as potential replacements for Chaffetz include: Speaker of the House, Greg Hughes, State Senator Deidre Henderson, Provo Mayor John Curtis and National Committeeman Thomas Wright.