Orrin Hatch: Republicans Hurt By Todd Akin, Still Have Shot at Majority

(Chris Maddaloni/CQ Roll Call)

TAMPA, Fla. — Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) conceded in an interview this morning that Rep. Todd Akin's controversial remarks have endangered GOP prospects in the Missouri Senate race, along with the party's chances of winning control of the Senate this fall.

“We’re going to take back the Senate, I believe, but it’s going to be very close,” Hatch said this morning. “It could go either way. I have to acknowledge that. The Akin race has hurt us to a degree.”

Utah: Orrin Hatch Cruises to Victory in GOP Primary

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Orrin Hatch handily won renomination in the Republican primary Tuesday night and is now heavily favored to win re-election to a seventh term, which he has said would be his last.

After entering the 2012 cycle as one of the Senate's most endangered incumbents, the 78-year-old lawmaker survived a challenge from Dan Liljenquist, an underfunded former state Senator whose candidacy was ultimately undone by Hatch's strong campaign and a lack of angst over the Senator's voting record and length of service. Hatch led 69 percent to 31 percent, with 13 percent of precincts reporting.

Utah: Orrin Hatch Outraised, Outspent Dan Liljenquist Pre-Primary

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Sen. Orrin Hatch continued to outraise his Republican primary challenger in the pre-primary fundraising period.

Hatch, who faces former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist in Tuesday’s contest, raised $569,000 from April 2 to June 6, according to records filed last week. Liljenquist brought in $309,000, including a $100,000 personal loan.

Utah: Rick Santorum Endorses Dan Liljenquist

Former Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.) today backed the Republican primary challenger to Utah Sen. Orrin Hatch.

Santorum, a presidential candidate until two months ago, announced his endorsement of former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist in an email to members of his new organization, Patriot Voices.

Utah: Freedom Path Ad Hits Dan Liljenquist for Missed Votes

A Utah nonprofit organization supportive of Sen. Orrin Hatch is airing a television ad that criticizes his Republican primary opponent, former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist, for missing nearly a quarter of the floor votes held during the 2011 legislative session.

The group, Freedom Path, spent $60,000 on the spot, which began running in the middle of last week and is set to run through the end of next week. The primary is scheduled for June 26.

Utah: Sarah Palin Backs Orrin Hatch Ahead of Primary

(Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin endorsed Sen. Orrin Hatch for re-election to a seventh term.

Palin's backing offers Hatch another conservative endorsement as he holds off a Republican primary challenge from former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist. Hatch, who has faced criticism from some conservatives for past votes, narrowly missed securing the nomination at the state party convention last month, forcing the two into a June 26 primary.

Utah: Dan Liljenquist Slams Orrin Hatch on Lack of Debates

Former Utah state Sen. Dan Liljenquist launched the first TV ad of his Republican primary challenge to longtime Sen. Orrin Hatch.

The 30-second ad, for which the campaign spent about $125,000, slams Hatch for agreeing to only one debate — and only on the radio — before the June 26 contest. He asks viewers to call Hatch and request that more debates be held.

Orrin Hatch Donated $10K to Richard Mourdock After Primary

Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock received a congratulatory call from Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) on Thursday, two days after Mourdock's 20-point defeat of Sen. Dick Lugar in the Indiana Republican primary.

Hatch, who is facing a conservative challenge of his own in a primary next month, spoke with Mourdock for 10 minutes and cut him a check for $10,000 from his leadership political action committee, Orrin PAC.

Utah: Orrin Hatch Picks Up Chamber Endorsement

(Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Although Sen. Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) still has to get through his primary challenge from state Sen. Dan Liljenquist, he picked up a big endorsement Wednesday. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce announced the group is endorsing Hatch in his re-election bid.

Chamber President Tom Donohue called Hatch “a tireless leader” in a statement and praised Hatch’s positions on economic policy.

Utah: Orrin Hatch Keeping His Head Down

(Scott J. Ferrell/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

If Sen. Orrin Hatch is breathing a sigh of relief, he isn’t acting like it. In a brief interview with Roll Call this evening, the Utah Republican declined to gloat about his Saturday victory at the state GOP convention.

Rather, Hatch displayed the same attitude of determined but disciplined caution he has exhibited since beginning what many believed was an uphill campaign for re-election two years ago.