Sen. Orrin Hatch to retire, opening door for Romney

WASHINGTON — Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, announced Tuesday that he will retire at the end of his term this year, ending months of speculation about the political future of the longest-serving Republican in the Senate.

“Every good fighter knows when to hang up the gloves. And for me that time is soon approaching,” Hatch, a former amateur boxer, said in a video posted online. “That’s why, after much prayer and discussion with family and friends, I’ve decided to retire at the end of this term.”