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For week ended January 30, 2000 Posted 24 Feb 2001
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Summarized by Kent Larsen

Hatch: Re-evaluating Options
Salt Lake Tribune 25Jan00 N2
By John Heilprin: Salt Lake Tribune

DES MOINES, IOWA -- Utah Senator and Presidential Candidate Orrin Hatch, a member of the LDS Church, plans to hold a news conference today in Washington D.C., where he returned following a poor showing in the Iowa presidential caucuses last night. Hatch received 1 percent of the vote, fewer than 900 votes, in the caucuses.

Before he left Iowa Monday night, Hatch told reporters that he planned to continue on to New Hampshire, "We're planning on going up to New Hampshire. I hope we can continue to go forward. And if we can, that'd be great. If we can't, well, I won't be the first one who filed too late and wasn't able to get it done," Hatch told reporters late Monday afternoon before the votes were counted. But Heilprin of the Salt Lake Tribune speculates that Hatch may have a change of heart and drop out of the race at today's news conference.

Reporters questions to Hatch focused on whether or not he was discouraged that his campaign hadn't taken off, "I don't get discouraged. I just keep going. Right now I intend to keep moving on, keep plodding on," he replied. "It would have been easier had I filed a lot earlier and had two or three years behind me, I wouldn't be having quite as difficult a time as I'm having right now."

Hatch was the only one of the five Republican candidates participating in the Iowa caucuses not to hold a party Monday night to announce the results of the caucuses. Instead, Hatch traveled back to Washington, and his staff had little comment on the results. But his national political director, Jim Camp did say, "Nothing has changed," when asked about Hatch's plans for New Hampshire.

Hatch has focused his resources on the three initial states where caucuses and primaries are held, Alaska, Iowa and New Hampshire. How he fared in last night's Alaska caucuses, considered much less important, is not yet known. Hatch has had strong showings in Alabama and Wyoming, where few others have campaigned.

Much of Hatch's strategy has hinged on being the GOP alternative if Texas Gov. George W. Bush stumbles. However, that hasn't happened.


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