Rep. Jason Chaffetz (R-Utah), who announced this week that he won’t seek re-election in 2018, revealed Thursday that he might not even finish out his current term.
Chaffetz shared the possibility with KSL News radio host Doug Wright in a text message. The House Oversight Committee chairman reportedly wrote: “Thanks for having me on yesterday, I appreciate it. I will continue to weigh the options, but I might depart early. The state needs to figure out how this works.”
The last comment is a reference to how Utah would replace him, should he leave Congress before his term expires.
The conservative lawmaker announced Wednesday in a Facebook post that he will not seek re-election. Chaffetz wrote that serving in Congress has been “an honor and a privilege that I have never taken for granted.”
“After long consultation with my family and prayerful consideration, I have decided I will not be a candidate for any office in 2018,” he continued, adding that he doesn’t believe politics should be a “lifetime or full career.”
The 50-year-old congressman said “no ulterior motives” influence the decision.
“I am healthy. I am confident I would continue to be re-elected by large margins,” he wrote.
As for his political aspirations in the future, Chaffetz told Wright, “I’m trying to leave the door open for possibilities down the road.”
There is some speculation the outgoing lawmaker could launch a run for governor of Utah in the future.