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Monday, October 28, 2013

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today - October 28, 2013
Countdown: There are 8 days to the 2013 municipal elections, 91 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature, 372 days until the 2014 midterm elections and 799 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

  • Utah Republicans approve some reforms to the neighborhood caucus system at the same time the "Count My Vote" group launches their petition drive to do away with the caucus system [Tribune].
  • How has Sen. Mike Lee become a rockstar-like figure with Tea Party affiliated voters? [Tribune]
  • NAACP president Benjamin Jealous warns a Salt Lake City audience that voter-suppression is an eminent danger [Tribune].
  • The mayors of South Jordan, Riverton and Bluffdale say the proposed $495 million bond from the Jordan School District is too large [Tribune].
  • How much should endorsements matter in local elections? [Provo Buzz]
  • Rep. Ralph Okerlund wants to change the official state tree from the Colorado blue spruce to the aspen [Tribune].
  • The Utah Transit Authority hopes to double current ridership by the end of the decade [Tribune].
  • Good news for Utah's schools. Eighth-graders in the Beehive state perform better in science than their peers in all but 5 countries. Those same students rank 11th in math [Tribune].
  • Advocates worry Utah's anti-bullying law, which requires school officials to notify parents of victims, could accidentally "out" LGBT kids [Tribune].
  • A new study gives Utah an A+ for efforts to keep people with mental illness out of the criminal justice system [Deseret News].
  • The state's retirement system delivers the 8th-best returns in the country [Tribune].
  • UDOT has some bridges and roads that can salt themselves to melt ice [Tribune].
  • The Utah State Prison bans pictures drawn with crayons because some are using the wax as a way to smuggle drugs into the facility [KSL].
  • A small group of protestors rally outside the NSA data facility in Bluffdale [Tribune].
  • The Road Home is bracing for a surge in the number of homeless and poor people needing shelter this winter [Tribune].
  • Utah farmers and ranchers are advocating for immigration reforms that will allow them to hire enough workers [Deseret News].

Today At Utah Policy

Huntsman: Partisanship is Backfiring (Video)
Former Gov. Jon Huntsman tells the Wall Street Journal that the extreme partisanship we're seeing in Congress is hurting the country....

GOP Senator: Republicans 'Not Ready to Govern'
Bloomberg's Ramesh Ponnuru says an unnamed Republican senator told him the shutdown shows his party is not ready to govern....

Chaffetz Takes Aim at Valerie Jarrett
Rep. Jason Chaffetz sees the heavy hand of White House senior advisor Valerie Jarrett in the botched rollout of Obamacare....

Bob Bernick's Notebook: A Warning Sign for Utah Journalism?
I read with amazement this past week the two newspaper stories about how the owners of The Salt Lake Tribune sold to the LDS Church/Deseret News their share in the relatively-new West Valley City presses and several downtown real estate properties....

Featured Items

Utah Policy/KSL Insider Poll: Did the Shutdown Hurt Mike Lee Politically?
Sen. Orrin Hatch has suggested Sen. Mike Lee needs to "rehabilitate" his image with Utah voters due to his falling approval ratings after the government shutdown. Our Insiders and readers weigh in on Lee's political future....

New Entrepreneur Co-working Space Set to Launch in Southern Utah
Working space, collaboration, resources and community are all vital to any new startup. However, these can be hard to come by and hard to afford when a young business is just starting....

Press Release: Utah First Announces 'Protect Our Neighborhood Elections' Campaign
Protect Our Neighborhood Elections is a campaign to educate and defend our convention/primary system of elections currently under attack by the political royalty and wealthy of Utah....

Lee Vindicated by Obamacare Train Wreck?
National Review's Deroy Murdoch says the catastrophic rollout of could transform Sen. Mike Lee from goat to hero for his Defund Obamacare crusade....'s Users Speak Out: 'Clean This Mess Up'
Over the weekend, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services began unveiling its effort to fix, the home for the federal insurance marketplace. Part of that was a blog post soliciting comments from folks who have tried the site....

Intermountain Chapter of US/Mexico Chamber of Commerce Launched
Utah Valley University hosted the 2013 US/Mexico Business Conference last week with an impressive show of support from Utah's private and public sectors....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: No fare hike part of UTA's good news budget

Editorial: All Utahns should encourage more black culture

Editorial: Utah Regents right to encourage '15 to Finish'

Utah retirement pension ranks nationally for private equity returns

Utah GOP votes to reform caucus system

NAACP leader tells Salt Lake audience to fight to maintain voter rights

Making waves defines Lee's short Senate career

NSA Data Center provides big backdrop to little protest

Senator Lee wages polarizing fight to revamp the GOP

Deseret News

Op-ed: The CARE tax is worth renewing

John Florez: Bureaucracies do not work for customers, feds should be more like Utah

Op-ed: Compromise or collusion? Mike Lee draws a line in the sand

Study: Utah among states with math, science scores above international average

New Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox enjoys brief homecoming

Guv's general counsel appointed to appellate court post

Visiting NAACP president urges Salt Lake branch to emphasize voter access, participation

Utah farmers, ranchers want immigration reforms to meet labor needs


Lawmakers looking to change state tree to aspen (Daily Herald)

Orem elections a matter of tax (Daily Herald)

Utah's First Lady asks parents to prioritize kids (Daily Herald)

Davis County welcomes state's deeper look into Stericycle waste burner (Standard-Examiner)

City campaigns have few women candidates - Why? (Standard-Examiner)

School district lowers bond interest rates (Logan Herald Journal)

Election 2013: Park City turnout is scarce at start, but will it pick up? (Park Record)

National Headlines

Obama in no mood to talk ObamaCare (The Hill)

HHS secretary is now the 'laughingstock of America,' says senator (The Hill)

Shift on Syria angers Saudi Arabia, muddying Obama's Mideast plans (The Hill)

Kathleen Sebelius prepares to face the music on Obamacare (Christian Science Monitor)

Two Republican congressmen defend U.S. spying abroad (Reuters)

Key U.S. official faces grilling over Obamacare website (Reuters)

Hawaii Set To Take Up Gay Marriage In Special Session Monday (NPR)

In a first, U.S. to use NSA surveillance against terror suspect (CNN)

Dick Cheney: Liz Cheney 'Going to Win' Senate Race (ABC News)

Ohio Governor Kasich criticized over layoffs at Ohio aluminum plant (State Journal)

Senator Rand Paul Is Right To Hold Up Janet Yellen's Federal Reserve Nomination, And Democrats Should Support Him (Forbes)

Fed Proposes a Rule to Help Big Banks Stay Liquid in Times of Crisis (New York Times)

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Wise Words

"Tact is the ability to describe others as they see themselves."
Abraham Lincoln Quotations Page

Lighter Side

Going Great
"Only 12 percent of Americans think the rollout of Obamacare is going well, while 100 percent of Republicans think the rollout of Obamacare is going GREAT." Jimmy Fallon Political Humor

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