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Sen. Orrin Hatch said he was 'grateful' for an editorial calling for him to step down

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) talks with reporters following a lunch meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump at the White House November 27, 2017 in Washington, DC. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

It’s important to read past the headline.

Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) learned that the hard way Monday, when he retweeted an editorial naming him “Utahn of the Year.”

It wasn’t what he thought it was.

A brutal takedown

Hatch was indeed named Utahn of the Year by The Salt Lake Tribune. However, the editorial staff made it clear that it wasn’t necessarily a good thing.

“These things are often misunderstood,” the opening sentence of the editorial reads. “So, lest our readers, or the honoree himself, get the wrong impression, let us repeat the idea behind The Salt Lake Tribune’s Utahn of the Year designation.

“…The Tribune has assigned the label to the Utahn who, over the past 12 months … Has had the biggest impact. For good or for ill.”

The editorial went on to issue some scathing attacks on Hatch’s long tenure as senator.

  • The editorial said Hatch has an “utter lack of integrity that rises from his unquenchable thirst of power.”
  • It said the decision to cut the size of two Utah national monuments had “no constitutional, legal or environmental logic.”
  • It accused him of “a theft from the Utah electorate” due to his attempts to “freeze the field” and make it nearly impossible for others to mount a credible challenge.
  • It said Hatch should “call it a career” and if he refuses to do so, “the voters should end it for him.”

This writer’s perspective

The headline doesn’t always tell the story. Sometimes, it intentionally misleads the reader.

If Hatch had just stopped and read the first sentence of the article, he would have saved himself a bit of embarrassment.

A good reminder to us all to slow down before we click “share” on something.

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