- The Washington Times - Thursday, May 18, 2017

Rep. Jason Chaffetz confirmed Thursday he will resign his post in Congress next month.

In a letter to his constituents, Mr. Chaffetz wrote, “As you know, after careful consideration and long discussion with my wife, Julie, we agree the time has come for us to move on from this part of our life. This week I sent a letter to Governor Herbert indicating my intention to resign from Congress effective June 30, 2017.”

The chairman of the House Oversight Committee announced earlier this year that he would be retiring from Congress to return to the private sector. Mr. Chaffetz, a Republican, said at the time that the travel to and from his Utah district to D.C. was costly and hard on his family, which he addressed in Thursday’s letter.
“My life has undergone some big changes over the last 18 months,” he wrote. “Those changes have been good. But as I celebrated my 50th birthday in March, the reality of spending more than 1,500 nights away from my family over eight years hit me harder than it had before.”

An early departure from Mr. Chaffetz would mean another special election added to the calendar, as well as a race to fill his post as chairman of the Oversight Committee.

Rep. Jim Jordan, Ohio Republican, has been floated as a possible contender since losing the chairman post to Mr. Chaffetz back in 2014. Rep. Trey Gowdy, South Carolina Republican, a close friend of Mr. Chaffetz, has also been pitched as a possibility. Both men currently sit on the committee.

Mr. Chaffetz recently threatened to subpoena documents concerning former FBI Director James B. Comey’s memo to President Trump about the investigation into former National Security Adviser Michael Flynn, tweeting: “I have my subpoena pen ready.”

The congressman has been accused by his Democratic colleagues of not being aggressive in his committee’s probe of Mr. Trump.

Mr. Chaffetz has also called for Mr. Comey to testify before his committee next week.

• Sally Persons can be reached at spersons@washingtontimes.com.

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