The day after making a jaw-dropping announcement that he won't seek re-election, Congressman Jason Chaffetz told FOX 13 he may not even finish his term in office.
“When I contemplate another 200 nights away from home, it is just too much,” Chaffetz told FOX 13 news anchor Bob Evans.
Hours later, Chaffetz released a statement, adding: "My future plans are not yet finalized but I haven't ruled out the possibility of leaving early. In the meantime, I still have a job to do and have no plans to take my foot off the gas."
The announcement led to more speculation and some suspicion about the 3rd District congressman's reasons for leaving. The powerful chairman of the House Oversight Committee has repeatedly cited turning 50, growing weary of sleeping on his office cot, and his family being back in Utah.
The first thing that everybody needs to keep in mind is that when a politician says they are quitting to spend more time with their family, that it is ALWAYS bullshit.
And as Mother Jones points out Chaffetz has been almost brutally aggressive with his ambitions:
Jason Chaffetz is so ambitious that his last name is a verb.
In the political world, to Chaffetz means to throw a former mentor under the bus in order to get ahead, and various prominent Republicans, from former Utah governor and presidential candidate Jon Huntsman Jr. to House Majority Leader Rep. Kevin McCarthy, have experienced what it's like to get Chaffetzed.
MJ goes on however to suggest that this might be some carefully laid out plan by Chaffetz to make distance between himself and Donald Trump while he plots his return to politics.
However I am still of a mind that there is something seriously scandalous that Chaffetz is attempting to head off or stay well clear of, and that the only thing he is doing is covering his own ass.
Keep in mind the lesson of Sarah Palin.
Once you quit partway through your term the road back is virtually nonexistent.