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Thursday, January 23, 2014

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today - January 23, 2014

Lawmakers form the "Clean Air Caucus" to address Utah's air quality. The hired gun lawyer hired by Utah to help with the Amendment 3 appeal took the job because of his LDS faith. Utah's push for campaign finance transparency might conflict with free speech.


  • 4 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature
  • 49 days until the final day of the 2014 Legislature
  • 152 days until Utah's 2014 primary elections
  • 285 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 648 days to the 2015 elections
  • 713 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 1019 days to the 2016 presidential election
Today's Utah news highlights:
  • A bipartisan group of Utah lawmakers unveil a package of bills to improve the state's air quality [Tribune].
  • A new poll says Utahns think getting students reading at grade level by the 3rd grade should be the top priority for lawmakers [Utah Policy, Deseret News].
  • Utah's push for campaign finance transparency may infringe on free speech laws [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  • The outside lawyer hired by Utah to help with the Amendment 3 appeal reportedly took the job because of his Mormon faith [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Jeremy Johnson claims former Attorney General John Swallow conspired with federal prosecutors against him [Tribune].
  • Sen. Orrin Hatch says a tax on medical devices due to Obamacare is "stupid" and hurts the manufacturers of those devices [Tribune].
  • Utah prosecutors say the number of immigration scams are on the rise [Tribune].
  • Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams is pushing for a convention center hotel [KUTV].
  • The Outdoor Retailers trade show generates about $20 million for Utah's economy every year [Deseret News].
  • A libertarian group is backing legislation to change the way Utah cops serve search warrants [Tribune].
  • An advocacy group says Utah is in the middle of the pack when it comes to traffic safety laws [Tribune].
  • The Roy City Council had to cast lots to fill a vacant council seat [Standard-Examiner].
On this day in history:
  • Congress decided all national elections would be held on the first Tuesday after the first Monday in November in 1845.
  • The 20th Amendment to the Constitution, also known as the "Lame Duck Amendment," was ratified in 1933.
  • The 24th Amendment to the Constitution, which barred poll taxes, was ratified in 1964.
  • President Nixon announced an acccord had been reached to end the Vietnam War in 1973.
  • Bob Keeshan, better known as "Captain Kangaroo," passed away in 2004.

Today At Utah Policy

Bryan Schott's Political BS: Utah Progressives on the Brink
It's put up or shut up time for the left-wing of Utah's Democratic party....

Lawmakers Preview the 2014 Legislative Session, Say Education is Top Issue
It may be two years away, but a group of lawmakers, business leaders, lobbyists and political insiders believe GOP Gov. Gary Herbert will run for re-election in 2016....

Campaign Transparency vs. the 1st Amendment in Utah (Video)
Campaign finance reform will be a hot topic on Utah's Capitol Hill during the 2014 session, especially after the House investigation into John Swallow revealed a number of economic shenanigans during his 2012 campaign. But, the zeal for reform may run into Constitutional con...

Sen. Todd Weiler Plays the 'Lightning Round' (Video)
With 60 seconds to answer as many questions as he can, Republican Senator Todd Weiler faces the "Lightning Round"!...

Sen. Todd Weiler Discusses the Upcoming 2014 Legislative Session (Video)
Sen. Todd Weiler says the 2014 Legislature will be 2013 redux....

Featured Items

Bill Maurer, Executive Director of the Institute for Justice
Utah's push for more transparency in campaign finance could run smack dab into the 1st Amendment....

Rep. Greg Hughes Discusses the Need for Campaign Finance Transparency
Rep. Greg Hughes says the John Swallow investigation revealed a need for more transparency in Utah political donations....

Weekly Survey: 2014 Legislative Priorities
What are the top issues facing Utah lawmakers as they head back to work next Monday? Vote now in our weekly survey....

Utah Cities Rise to the Top in Milken and Harvard Rankings
In Utah's ongoing battle for business supremacy, a recent report from the Milken Institute endorses Utah as the place to do business. Milken ranks Salt Lake City as number five and Provo-Orem as number two on its list of "Top 25 Best-Performing Large Cities."...

Outlook for Utah Economy Positive in 2014
Job growth, income growth and the unemployment rate are all expected to improve this year as the Beehive State continues to outperform national economic conditions....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell wants to create a new CCC

Hatch calls tax on medical devices 'stupid'

Police search warrants up for debate at this year's legislative session

Does Utah law trample free speech in campaigns?

Jeremy Johnson cites conspiracy by feds, Swallow

Bipartisan group pushes Utah clean air bills

State of Utah gets filing extension in same-sex marriage appeal

Deseret News

Jay Evensen: After 19 years, Salt Lake's convention hotel battle is evolving

Dan Liljenquist: Congress has only itself to blame for Obama's executive orders

Editorial: Now, the U.S. is only 'mostly free'

Interior Secretary details approach to connect millennials with the outdoors

Two Utah cities among best for business

Utah medical device manufacturer says Affordable Care Act tax will hurt innovation

Feds, state officials partner with community leaders to fight immigration services scams

Attorney accused of defending Amendment 3 to impose religious viewpoint

Utah Clean Air Caucus unveils legislative measures

Fight erupts over uintah basin oil shale mining project, protection of water


Google Fiber now available to residents in former iProvo areas (Daily Herald)

Editorial: Small mall steps against dirty air (Standard-Examiner)

Utah bill would control forcible serving of search warrants (Standard-Examiner)

Utah's Clean Air Caucus says it means business (Standard-Examiner)

Department of Environmental Quality seeks to keep Utah air pollution in perspective (Logan Herald Journal)

National Headlines

Greens blast Obama as oil flows through southern Keystone leg (The Hill)

Poll: Scandal provides insight on potential Christie presidency (The Hill)

Treasury moves up debt limit warning (USA Today)

Mayor Admits Shortcomings in Snowstorm Effort (New York Times)

Bipartisan election commission releases list of suggested fixes (Washington Post)

In Speech, Brown Balances Good, and Bad, Facing California (New York Times)

Wendy Davis defiant in wake of biographical revelations (NBC News)

Abortion still potent political motivator 41 years after Roe (NBC News)

Supreme Court takes a shot at 'straw' gun purchases (Detroit Free Press)

Pacific trade partners in end-game of trade talks (Reuters)

Michigan governor pushes plan to protect Detroit art, pensions (Reuters)

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Wise Words

Value of Money
"If you would know the value of money, go try to borrow some; for he that goes a-borrowing goes a-sorrowing."
Benjamin Franklin Quotations Page

Lighter Side

Play Station 4
"The rollout of the Affordable Care Act continues to be terrible. Now comes news that not enough young, healthy Americans are signing up. Did they expect young people to buy insurance the same time that Play Station 4 comes out?" Jimmy Kimmel Political Humor

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