When Senator Orrin Hatch's spokesman, Dave Hansen, was asked about the senator retiring, he responded condescendingly. Mr. Hansen told the Atlantic that nothing had changed since the media outlet itself had published a "carbon copy" of the same claims from months before. According to either report, five sources in Utah said that Hatch told allies in private that he was planning to retire. But in saying so, he also added that Mitt Romney would be running to replace him.

Hatch's 2017 priorities

Mr. Hansen's response was to focus on the issues that Congress was currently facing, with passing "historic tax reform", confirming judges across the country and to continue to legislate for Utah by fighting through the gridlock.

Hatch was likely referring to the issues that have presented themselves in Congress. Many Republicans have felt that Congress wasted a lot of time with trying to repeal Obamacare, as they had failed to pass a repeal multiple times due many in the party who refused to vote.

Now with only two months left in the year, House Republicans have rushed to lay down the foundation to President Trump's tax reform by passing a $4 trillion budget. It will now be the responsibility of the Senate to do the same. Since Sen. Hatch is the chairman of the Finance Committee, he has said that in league with the budget that he planned on passing his tax plan by next month.

Retirement gets Bannon's attention

It's largely presumed that because Romney is "loved" in Utah that he would easily win for Hatch's seat.

Although, according to Politico, Breitbart's Steve Bannon plans to throw his support behind a candidate for the Utah primary against Romney. Bannon has made no secret of wanting to go up against Romney. The Atlantic said that a spokesman for Romney would not comment.

Sources claimed that the plans for Sen. Hatch to retire and for Romney to run have already been set in motion.

But they also spoke on the conditions of anonymity because nothing has been finalized yet. Those allied sources spoke on the condition of anonymity for obvious reasons but also because both men could still change their minds. Before August, Steve Bannon was President Trump's chief strategist at the White House where he was said to strategize political attacks against Trump's opponents in the Republican Party.

Steps to turn Congress into 'Trumpublicans'

After being fired by White House Chief of Staff John Kelly, Bannon was one of the few who returned to Breitbart News vowing to fight against the president's critics from the outside. One of the recent examples of this was with Bannon throwing his support behind Roy Moore in Alabama. Trump publicly put his support behind Luther Strange, who replaced Jeff Sessions' seat, which was said to have been influenced by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who Bannon has also vowed to have replaced. Roy Moore would win the Alabama primary.

Hatch's retirement comes after Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ) announced on the Senate floor that he too would be leaving. Sen. Flake had already been attacking and was getting attacked by President Trump via Twitter and in rallies.

Flake is seen by Trump's supporters as an establishment Republican, and his retirement is largely seen as Trump "draining the swamp." As other Republicans either retire or even run for another term in 2018, Bannon is there to make sure he has candidates that are more like Trump, to replace them in primaries.