Sen. Mark Hatfield flew back to Oregon Thursday with every indication he would announce his retirement today.
The Republican told his staff in Washington Thursday morning that he would retire at the end of his term, an Oregon congressional aide, speaking on condition of anonymity, told The Associated Press.
Senate Majority Leader Bob Dole said Hatfield left little doubt in a conversation that he would not seek a sixth term.
“He certainly left that impression. … I don’t want to make that statement until he actually does it. He might change his mind on the long flight,” said Dole, R-Kan.