U., Hatch team up for center to promote political civility

May 2, 2018, 10:27 AM | Updated: Aug 4, 2022, 8:35 am

Sen. Orrin Hatch points to a rendering of the planned Orrin G. Hatch Center for bipartisanship and ...

Sen. Orrin Hatch points to a rendering of the planned Orrin G. Hatch Center for bipartisanship and political civility during a news conference Wednesday, May 2, 2018, at the Thomas S. Monson Center. The Hatch Center will be built at 427 E. South Temple in downtown Salt Lake City. Jared Page/KSL Newsradio

SALT LAKE CITY — The “literal and symbolic legacy” of longtime Sen. Orrin Hatch will have a home in downtown Salt Lake, with the goal of enhancing political civility and bipartisan solutions.

The Orrin G. Hatch Center, announced at a news conference Wednesday morning, will partner with the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics and the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute to encourage an atmosphere of collaboration in local and national politics.

“The Hatch Center, together with the University of Utah, will house the literal and symbolic legacy of Sen. Hatch, his extensive senatorial collection, his ongoing policy leadership, and his commitment to collaboration,” said  Trent Christensen, director of the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation.

The center will focus on civility and solutions, Christensen said, and work to restore statesmanship to American politics.

“America is at its best when goodwill, respect and civility are at the heart of our public discourse, and I am pleased to partner with the University of Utah to establish a new center for civic education and bipartisan policy research,” Hatch said.

“The center will act as an incubator for the study of bipartisanship and the legislative process, and our goal is to promote constructive policy development in Washington and across the nation, and to equip future generations of public servants and engaged citizens,” he said.

The Hatch Center will be constructed at 427 E. South Temple. It will be the repository of the longtime senator’s collection of papers and legislative documents, according to the Hatch Foundation.

The building will feature a replica of Hatch’s office, while providing space for meetings, lectures, debates, scholarly study, and research. It will also house a library and digital archives for U. students, faculty, scholars and the public.

Officials put a $30 million price tag on the project, covering construction and endowments planned for the center.

“The University of Utah looks forward to a productive and meaningful collaboration with the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation,” U. President Ruth Watkins said. “This new center will be an important space where students and the public from across Utah can research and study government, as well as openly discuss public policy and the value of public service.”


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U., Hatch team up for center to promote political civility