"I will continue to weigh the options, but I might depart early", he told the Utah radio station via text. "In the meantime, I still have a job to do and I have no plans to take my foot off the gas".
As chairman of the House Oversight Committee, Chaffetz led well-publicized investigations into the Secret Service as well as former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton's use of a private email server.
"I may run again for public office, but not in 2018", Chaffetz wrote on Facebook. I am confident I would continue to be re-elected by large margins. Chaffetz's panel is investigating payments made to Michael Flynn, Trump's former national security adviser, for speaking engagements in Russian Federation and the security protocols at President Trump's Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach.
Chaffetz took on the chairmanship of the House Oversight Committee in 2015, following Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). The longer you spend in Washington, the worse off you are; for every year there, it becomes that much tougher to get away from the DC stench in the minds (and noses) of Republican voters.
Observers were quick to point out Chaffetz has before expressed an interest in being Utah's governor and could seek the role in 2020.
But Chaffetz was also facing a tougher than usual reelection battle with a potential primary challenge from the Republican mayor of Provo John Curtis. He said he got a call from Chaffetz Tuesday night about his plans. His decision to make the Wednesday announcement, he says, was to give prospective candidates in Utah "time to lay the groundwork for a successful run". The 63-year-old family physician and political newcomer was actually motivated to run after attending Chaffetz's now-infamous town hall on the eve of the Republican effort to repeal the Affordable Care Act.
It's unclear whether Democrats will contest this district in 2018.
The Utah State Legislature did not pass a bill that would have addressed the intricacies of a special election.
Kathryn Allen has been transformed from a political unknown into a liberal hero for calling out Mr Chaffetz on Twitter, giving her an early boost in name recognition. "I would take a serious, serious look at running for governor", Chaffetz told the Deseret News past year.