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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today - January 28, 2014

Lockhart hits Herbert. Same sex marriage may be a smaller issue on the Hill in 2014. Dabakis says he sees a need for "Count My Vote."


  • 44 days until the final day of the 2014 Legislature
  • 147 days until Utah's 2014 primary elections
  • 280 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 643 days to the 2015 elections
  • 708 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 1014 days to the 2016 presidential election
Today's Utah news highlights:
  • Speaker Becky Lockhart, sounding very much like a candidate for governor in 2016, comes out swinging against Gov. Gary Herbert on the opening day of the 2014 Legislature [Utah Policy, Tribune, Deseret News].
  • It's all about defending the status quo on the first day of the legislature in the Utah Senate [Utah Policy].
  • There will be two competing rallies on either side of the same-sex marriage debate Tuesday evening at the Capitol [Tribune].
  • There may be an uneasy cease fire in the same-sex marriage fight on the Hill this year [Tribune].
  • Rep. Merrill Nelson is proposing a bill to allow Utahns to contribute to the defense of Amendment 3 on their income tax returns [Q Salt Lake].
  • Liquor laws could cause a split between the House and the Senate [Tribune].
  • Utahns oppose raising the gas tax to pay for transportation [Tribune].
  • Legislative leaders say they don't expect any tax hikes this year [Standard-Examiner].
  • The committee investigating John Swallow will not continue due to time constraints [Utah Policy].
  • Right now, there are more than 70 education bills slated for consideration during the 2014 session [Standard-Examiner].
  • Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis says lawmakers should focus on education funding in 2014 [Utah Policy].
  • Sen. Jim Dabakis says, while he opposes "Count My Vote," he sees a real need for choosing candidates by direct primary instead of caucuses [Utah Policy].
  • Sen. Orrin Hatch is part of a group of three Republicans in backing a plan to replace Obamacare [Tribune].
  • Sen. Mike Lee will focus on economic inequality during his response to the State of the Union Address on Tuesday night [Deseret News].
On this day in history:
  • Congress passed legislation creating the U.S. Coast Guard in 1915.
  • Louis Brandeis, the first Jewish member of the Supreme Court, was appointed in 1916.
  • Elvis Presley made his first national TV appearance in 1958.
  • A cease fire officially went into effect in the Vietnam War in 1973.
  • The Space Shuttle Challenger exploded 72 seconds after liftoff in 1986.
  • The U.S. House approved a huge $819 billion stimulus bill in 2009.

Today At Utah Policy

Sen. Jim Dabakis vs. the Utah Policy "Lightning Round" (Video)
With 60 seconds to answer as many stupid questions as possible, Sen. Jim Dabakis plays the Utah Policy "Lightning Round."...

Dabakis Says He Sees a Need for 'Count My Vote'
Sen. Jim Dabakis says his views on "Count My Vote" are evolving....

Sen. Gene Davis says Education Funding Should be Top Priority for Lawmakers (Video)
Senate Minority Leader Gene Davis says his top priority for the 2014 session is making sure Utah's schools are properly funded to deal with exploding growth....

Lockhart Hammers Herbert on Opening Day of 2014 Legislature
Let the 2016 gubernatorial campaign begin.At least that appeared the caseMondaywhen Utah House Speaker Becky Lockhart who is retiring this year and may run for governor in two years -- took after GOP Gov. Gary Herbert in her opening remarks....

Utah Senate: Holding the Line in 2014
The opening of the 2014 Legislature on the Senate side featured an emphatic message about "holding the line," whether it be on governmental power, alcohol or taxes....

House Committee Investigating Swallow Won't Continue
Within a few days expect the chair of the special John Swallow investigative committee to open at least two bill files that, at some point, will be filled with the committee's recommended changes to Utah campaign and election law aimed at stopping the abuses Swallow is alleg...

Another Owens Jumps into Utah Politics
Replace one moderate Democrat with a great Utah political name with another moderate Democrat with an equally great Utah political name?Doug Owens hopes Democrats and Republicans alike in the 4thCongressional District see the wisdom in such a move....

Sen. Wayne Niederhauser Faces the 'Lightning Round'
With just 60 seconds to answer as many questions as possible, Senate President Wayne Niederhauser faces the "Lightning Round."...

Sen. Wayne Niederhauser Previews the 2014 Session (Video)
Sen. President Wayne Niederhauser talks about the 2014 Utah Legislature which gavels into session on Monday morning.He sits down with Managing Editor Bryan Schott to discuss a number of issues facing lawmakers as they get back to work....

Featured Items

Hatch Proposes Obamacare Replacement
National Review's Yuval Levin posts an in-depth analysis of Sen. Orrin Hatch's newly unveiled conservative healthcare reform plan, which Levin says "has enormous promise."...

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: Recall elections a good idea for Utah

Editorial: A new CCC could help bind a nation

Legislature opens 45-day session with some sparks

Hatch unveils Obamacare replacement bill

Poll: Utahns send mixed message on gas/transit taxes to Legislature

Activists plan dueling Capitol rallies on same-sex marriage

Public input sought on use of central Wasatch

Chief justice: Utah's courts thriving

Zion Curtain divides House and Senate

In-class or at-home preschool? Utah legislators to debate funds

Paul Rolly: Parody website pretends to be pro-Count My Vote

Legislature may sit out same-sex debates during the session

Deseret News

Michael and Jenet Erickson: Rally for marriage, but treat all people with respect

John Stockton story assists Utah Supreme Court justice in State of Judiciary speech

Utah leads out on underage drinking prevention

Public health and alcohol: Expert calls Utah 'envy of the nation'

House speaker criticizes governor in opening address to Utah Legislature

Economic inequality a major theme of Sen. Mike Lee's tea party State of the Union response


Lindon OKs UTOPIA again (Daily Herald)

Lockhart calls for leadership from governor as session begins (Daily Herald)

Editorial: Making government efficient (Standard-Examiner)

Lockhart takes shots at Herbert, 'Obamacare' in opening of Utah legislative session (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

Hillary: Benghazi 'my biggest regret' (The Hill)

GOP senators push ObamaCare alternative that scraps mandates (The Hill)

Trey Radel resigns from Congress in wake of cocaine scandal (Christian Science Monitor)

Florida Medical Marijuana Plan Can Go on Ballot After Ruling (Bloomberg)

Joint N.J. legislative committee probing Christie's 'Bridgegate' (Reuters)

Hillary Clinton talks Benghazi, Gates, 2016 (NBC)

Did airline unfairly report angry pilot to TSA? Supreme Court rules. (Christian Science Monitor)

Obama gets pledges from big business on unemployed (USA Today)

SOTU VIPs: Guess who got a seat next to the first lady (MSNBC)

U.S. Supreme Court throws out conviction of Iowa drug dealer (Des Moines Register)

Senate Republicans pitch ObamaCare alternative on eve of presidential address (Fox News)

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Lighter Side

Low in the Polls
"Here's something I find hard to believe. Anthony Weiner makes between three and four hundred thousand dollars a year as a political consultant. Anthony Weiner! How bad are you doing in the polls when you start saying to yourself, 'What would Anthony Weiner do now?'" Jay Leno Political Humor

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