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Tuesday, January 24, 2017

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Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Morning Must Reads for Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 24th day of the year. There are 341 days remaining in 2017.

Utah Lawmakers get back to work. Rep. Mike Noel says he's got a "good chance" of being named BLM director. Lawmakers are on pace to request a record number of bills this year.

The clock:

  • 47 days until the final day of the 2017 Utah Legislature (3/9/2017)
  • 287 days until the 2017 municipal elections (11/7/2017)
  • 651 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1379 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Ten talking points for Tuesday:

  1. It begins. The 2017 Utah Legislature gets underway as leaders strike a defiant tone against the federal government and call for more action on solving homelessness [Utah Policy, Deseret News, Tribune].

  2. Job prospects. Rep. Mike Noel says he has a "good chance" of being picked to head the BLM in a Donald Trump administration. House Speaker Greg Hughes says he's had no further talks with Trump administration officials about a job in Washington, but that doesn't mean he's not still interested. Neither man thinks if any appointment comes, it will not be before the Utah Legislature ends in March [Utah Policy].

  3. It's money that matters. Utah lawmakers are preparing to scour this year's budget, hoping they can find a "chunk of change" they can pull back" to spend elsewhere. Meanwhile, others hope that the new Trump administration will be able to boost the economy, giving them more money to spend this year [Utah Policy].

  4. A mountain of paperwork. Lawmakers are on track to open more than 1,500 bill files this year, which would be a new record. One unnamed lawmaker alone has requested at least 40 bill files this session [Utah Policy].

  5. Boring but important. Legislative Democrats are fighting like crazy against a bill that would reduce their representation on a number of state boards and commission. Many of those bodies require a certain number of members from both parties, but HB 11 would do away with some of those requirements [Utah Policy].

  6. A matter of priorities. Sen. Todd Weiler is abandoning his plan to establish an "official" state hashtag for Utah, saying there are more important things to focus on [Utah Policy].

  7. Not playing nice. LaVarr Webb argues that Donald Trump's adversarial relationship with the media could lead to "open warfare" between Trump and major news outlets over the next four years [Utah Policy].

  8. You're (not) hired. Rep. Chris Stewart was widely rumored to be in the running to be Air Force Secretary in the Donald Trump administration. He was passed over for that job on Monday as Trump tapped former Congresswoman Heather Wilson of New Mexico [Utah Policy, Tribune].

  9. Women's march redux. Thousands of Utah women descend on the State Capitol, calling for equal rights and better representation in politics [Tribune].

  10. If you repeat a lie enough times...Donald Trump once again pushes the lie that millions of illegals voted in the 2016 election for Hillary Clinton, which cost him the popular vote [New York Times].

On this day in history:

  • 1848 - Gold was discovered at John Sutter's mill near Sacramento. The discovery touched off the gold rush of 1849.
  • 1916 - The Supreme Court ruled an income tax was constitutional.
  • 1984 - Apple's Macintosh computer went on sale. Price tag: $2,495.
  • 1995 - The prosecution gave its opening statement in the O.J. Simpson murder trial.

Today At Utah Policy

Noel Says He's In Running for BLM Director in Trump Administration

Longtime Utah legislator and rural advocate Rep. Mike Noel tells UtahPolicy he believes he has a “good chance” of being named BLM director by President Donald Trump....

Democrats Fail to Block Republican Bill to End Equal Partisan Representation on Some State Commissions

It wasn’t the slap in the minority Democrats’ face as last year’s partisan action, but on the first day of the 2017 Legislature House Democrats lost a minor battle over their influence in state government....

Battle Royale: Trump vs. the News Media

There’s an old rule in politics that you never go up against the people who buy ink by the barrel and paper by the roll. In other words, you don’t pick fights with the news media....

Lawmakers Ready to Tackle Budget, Hope Trump Administration Can Boost Economy

Utah lawmakers hope to find a "chunk of change" to put toward other programs as they attack the base budget this week, looking for places they can cut...but not too much....

Lee: How Trump, Congress Can Overhaul Taxes to Put 'America First'

Sen. Mike Lee unveils his own alternative to thetax reform proposal currently under considerationby House Republicans (which was recently criticized by Pres. Trump), suggesting that Congress eliminate the corporate income tax while increasing taxes on capital gains and divid...

Utah Lawmakers Propose Record Number of Bills...Again

Utah lawmakers are on pace to open 1,500 bill files in 2017, a record number to be sure. In fact, legislators seem to break that particular record every single year....

2017 Utah Legislature Opens with Call to Address Homelessness and Federal Overreach

As the Utah Legislature got underway Monday, House Speaker Greg Hughes said if Salt Lake City and Salt Lake County leaders don’t have the political will to deal with the state homeless issue effectively, then the Legislature will step in and do it....

No Official Hashtag for Utah this Year

The "official" state hashtag is dead for this year....

Stewart Passed Over by Trump for Air Force Secretary

Rep. Chris Stewart is not Donald Trump's pick to head up the Air Force during his presidency. That honor goes to former Rep. Heather Wilson of New Mexico....

Policy News

Lee Introduces Global Trade Accountability Act
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced the Global Trade Accountability Act Friday, a bill that would subject all Executive Branch trade actions (including raising tariffs) to congressional approval....

Lee Applauds President Trump's Action on Modernized Mexico City Policy
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) applauds President Trump’s bold, pro-life action taken today to reapply an updated version of the Reagan-era Mexico City Policy....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: Lower alcohol limit won't address the real safety problems

Steve Urquhart: For the homeless and the rest of us, the city, county and state must coordinate better

Editorial: Cities are right to guard their power to police watershed development

Utah Legislature opens with call to tackle homeless 'crisis'

Only 3% of Utah campaign money came from constituents, 92% from special interests

Salt Lake City has too much control over watersheds, Utah official says

Passing over Utah's Stewart, Trump picks ex-New Mexico rep for Air Force secretary

Electric car drivers will soon have more charging options in Salt Lake City - but they'll have to start paying to plug in

Rolly: What do Chaffetz and a disgraced deputy fuhrer have in common? Think suck-up, not Nazi

Environmentalists: Coal ash landfill near Price must be moved

Utah chief justice calls for Legislature to finish what it started, fund drug treatment

Bill advances for statewide suicide crisis line

Chaffetz on meeting with ethics watchdog: 'Everybody's blood pressure is coming down here'

Deseret News

Boyd Matheson: The SCOTUS case for Sen. Mike Lee

Op-ed: Improving education with more than money key to Utah success

Op-ed: Scott Pruitt will bring needed balance to EPA

Op-ed: Utah Delegation's joint response to Obama's Bears Ears monument designation

Op-ed: Native Americans deserve a chance to lead

Editorial: Utah should listen to the Utah Medical Association on marijuana

Editorial: Address factors that can lead to suicide

Concerns over inversions, pollution cloud another legislative session

Utah Supreme Court chief justice reflects on changes to judicial system

Utah's newborn screening law works to catch infants with hearing loss, study says

Session starts with tough talk on homelessness, states' rights

Hughes rallies for state support in homeless problem but warns against 'blank check'

National Headlines

Hillary Clinton plots her next move (Politico)

Trump signs executive actions on TPP, abortion, federal hiring freeze (The Hill)

Supreme Court rejects Texas voter ID appeal (The Hill)

Senate committee approves Tillerson for secretary of state (CNN)

Trump freezes hiring of many federal workers (Washington Post)

Liberal watchdog group sues Trump, alleging he violated constitutional ban (Washington Post)

Trump Files Documents To Shift Management Of Businesses To His Sons (NPR)

Madonna: 'Blowing up White House' taken out of context (CNN)

Trump picks former congresswoman and Air Force veteran Heather Wilson as Air Force secretary (Washington Post)

Dollar Extends Loss as Trump Begins Dismantling Trade Agreements (Bloomberg)

Santoli: Wall Street may not love Trump's focus on the manufacturing economy (CNBC)

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Wise Words

Social Justice Warriors
"We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions." Ronald Reagan

Lighter Side

"Donald Trump's press secretary claims that Trump's cabinet will be one of the most diverse in history. Of course he didn't mean American history, he meant Confederate history." Conan O'Brien

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