GOP Rep. Jason Chaffetz insisted Thursday his surprise exit from Washington — which he now says may happen in the next few months rather than after 2018 — isn't a quick escape from a lurking scandal.
In an interview with Politico, the Utah lawmaker and chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee said he's already started looking for jobs — and hopes to serve on boards of directors and link up with a television network.
"I started poking around to see what I might be worth and what sort of possibilities are there," Chaffetz told Politico.
But the timeline for his retirement has changed over the last few days after first announcing in a Facebook post he wouldn't run for any office in 2018.
"I might depart early," he confirmed to Politico. "It's not tomorrow, it's not next week. If it is, it's going to be in the months to come."
Asked then if the resignation is coming because of a scandal, Chaffetz responded: "Absolutely, positively not."
"Not in any way shape or form," he told the outlet. "I've been given more enemas by more people over the last eight years than you can possibly imagine. From the Secret Service to the Democratic Party. I am who I am. If they had something really scandalous, it would've come out a long, long time ago."
He's also not so definitive about a political resurgence down the line; Politico reported Chaffetz's political team has begun snapping up URLs associated with potential future runs. The governor's position in Utah opens up in 2020.
"I'm preventing the cybersquatters and I've also said that potentially I might get back into politics at a later date," he told Politico. "I want to keep those doors open. I'm not closing any potential future run."
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