WASHINGTON, Feb. 15, 2018 (Gephardt Daily) — Former Massachusetts governor and Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has delayed an expected announcement that he will run for a U.S. Senate seat representing Utah in the wake of the deadly school shooting in Florida Wednesday.
Multiple sources had reported that Romney would announce his bid online on Thursday.
Romney, 70, previewed his campaign in a short Facebook post: “Stay tuned for my announcement on the Utah Senate race this Thursday,” the post said. “Visit www.mittromney.com to be one of the first to know!”
Following the deadly shooting in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, in which 17 people were killed, Romney posted on Twitter that he was postponing his announcement.
“As a father and grandfather, my heart aches for the victims of today’s tragic events,” the tweet said. “My prayers go out to all of the families and loved ones affected by this senseless act of violence. Out of respect for the victims and their families, I will not be making an announcement tomorrow about the Senate race.”
The race is to succeed Republican Senator Orrin Hatch, who announced last month he would retire at the end of his term after serving as a U.S. Senator since 1977.
Three people with direct knowledge of the plan had told the Associated Press Romney would formally launch his campaign in a video at roughly 9 a.m. Utah time Thursday. Romney is set to be in Provo to headline the Utah County Republican Party Lincoln Day dinner Friday at 6 p.m. at Utah Valley Convention Center, which would have been his first public appearance as a Senate candidate. Multiple sources said Romney intends to release the video Friday morning before that evening dinner event.
The people who provided the information asked for anonymity because they were not authorized to talk about Romney’s plans in advance.
The school was attacked Wednesday afternoon by a heavily armed former student. Seventeen children and adults died, and more than a dozen more were injured, some of them critically.
Suspect Nikolas Cruz, 19, who was expelled for for behavioral problems, has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.