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Orrin Hatch announces he will retire next year

Sen. Orrin Hatch

Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, announced Tuesday he is retiring when the current session of Congress ends in January 2019.

Mr. Hatch is the most senior Republican in Congress, serving his seventh term. He is chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and serves on several other committees, including Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions and the Joint Committee on Taxation.

Mr. Hatch played a key role as one of the main negotiators of the tax reform bill passed at the end of December. He also claimed to have authored more bills that became law than any living current or past member of Congress.

In a video announcement posted on Twitter, Mr. Hatch referenced his early days as a boxer, and said, "every good fighter knows when to hang up the gloves. And for me, that time is soon approaching."

Also retiring after this session of Congress is House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster, R-Pa., who pledged to work with the White House on passing an infrastructure bill this year.

Mr. Shuster was limited under House rules to three consecutive two-year terms as committee chairman. Those rules prompted several other retirement announcements, including from House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, an outspoken critic of Dodd-Frank regulations.