A former adviser to Mitt Romney during the 2012 presidential campaign told "CBS This Morning" on Monday that it was "highly likely" the former MA governor would be running for a seat in the U.S. Senate.
The article, published Sunday, quotes Gov. Gary Herbert as saying: "Let's not be coy about this", to close Romney friend and prominent business leader, Kem Gardner.
President Donald Trump, whose candidacy Romney criticized during the 2016 campaign, has spoken with Romney by phone recently, and political observers have pointed to the possibility that Romney could be an outspoken critic of Trump's conduct from the Senate.
Some Senate Republicans are eager for Romney to run because they believe he would serve as an independent voice who is not afraid to stand up against his own party's president.
Trump had reportedly urged Hatch to seek another term in 2018 as a way to block Romney from running.
In the wake of Trump's victory, Romney dined with Trump, and afterward, he praised Trump for winning the presidency as speculation mounted that Trump might choose Romney for secretary of state.
Romney tweeted on Monday, "The poverty of an aspiring immigrant's nation of origin is as irrelevant as their race".
Herbert was eager to make sure Romney was actually running. "If not, we need to find somebody else to run, and there's people that have been trying to queue up for the opportunity".
Romney, who has a home in Holladay and is a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is being widely encouraged to run for Hatch's seat this year.
Friend says Mitt Romney will try for the Utah Senate seat left vacant by Orrin Hatch.