SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Utah's Legislature unanimously passed a resolution Wednesday honoring retiring U.S. Sen. Orrin Hatch.

The resolution declared the day "Orrin G. Hatch Day" in honor of Hatch and his 40-plus years in the U.S. Senate.

The Republican senator was at the state Capitol during the votes in the House and Senate Wednesday and shed a few tears as lawmakers paid tribute to him.

He said serving Utah in the Senate has been the privilege of a lifetime.

Hatch was first elected to the Senate in 1976. He went on to become one of the longest-serving senators in U.S. history.

Former GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney announced last week he was running to replace Hatch.