House Oversight and Government Reform Committee Chairman Jason Chaffetz announced Wednesday that he will not seek political office in 2018, a decision that comes amid rising speculation that he will run for governor of Utah in 2020.
“For those that would speculate otherwise, let me be clear that I have no ulterior motives,” Chaffetz (R-Utah) wrote on his Facebook page.
“I am healthy. I am confident I would continue to be reelected by large margins. I have the full support of Speaker Ryan to continue as Chairman of the Oversight and Government Reform Committee. That said, I have made a personal decision to return to the private sector.”
Chaffetz, 50, was first elected to the House in 2008 and became oversight chairman in 2015. He undertook a wide range of probes during the Obama administration, but has been criticized for inaction since the election of President Trump.
Earlier this month, Chaffetz held a town hall meeting during which an angry crowd criticized his tenure as oversight chairman, among other issues.
The Utah Republican said last year he was not interested in running for the Senate.
“The more I’m here, the more I’m convinced I don’t want to be in the United States Senate,” Chaffetz said in an interview with the Deseret News. “I’ve already invested years in the House and it’s essentially the same job, just more people over here and more competition.”