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Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics - February 25, 2014

An alternative to Medicaid expansion moves forward. A House committee approves a resolution supporting a move for the state prison. Legislation would make it more difficult to gather signatures for a citizen initiative.


  • 16 days until the final day of the 2014 Legislature
  • 17 days until the Utah candidate filing period opens
  • 21 days until the Utah Democratic Party caucus meetings
  • 21 days until the Utah candidate filing period closes
  • 23 days until the Utah GOP caucus meetings
  • 60 days until the Utah State Republican and Democratic conventions
  • 119 days until Utah's 2014 primary elections
  • 252 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 615 days to the 2015 elections
  • 680 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 986 days to the 2016 presidential election
Today's Utah political news highlights:
  • A legislative committee approves an alternative to accepting Medicaid expansion money from the feds [Tribune].
  • Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox talks about his involvement in the negotiations over Medicaid expansion [Utah Policy].
  • A House committee unanimously advances a resolution in support of moving the state prison away from Draper [Deseret News, Daily Herald,Tribune].
  • Rep. Jason Chaffetz visits lawmakers, voices his opposition to the "Count My Vote" initiative [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Sen. Curt Bramble says the state may have to repeal a pair of immigration reform laws passed by the legislature due to inaction by the federal government [Tribune].
  • A group of media outlets and educators form a non-partisan coalition to televise political debates [Utah Policy, Tribune.]
  • Gov. Gary Herbert meets with President Barack Obama and asks for more help dealing with drought conditions in the Western United States [Tribune].
  • Rep. Jon Stanard is proposing legislation to make it more difficult to gather signatures in order to get a citizen initiative or referendum on the ballot [Utah Policy].
  • The House approves a bill imposing reforms on the payday lending industry [Tribune].
  • The House Rules Committee uses a technicality to avoid taking action on a bill that would allow lawmakers to abstain from voting on legislation on which they have a conflict of interest [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  • A Gallup survey says 60% of Utahns are members of the LDS faith [KSL].
  • You must see this amazing video of Lt. Gov. Cox from when he was in high school [Utah Policy].
On this day in history:
  • Samuel Cold patented his revolver pistol in 1836.
  • Hiram Revels became the first black U.S Senator in 1870.
  • The 16th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, which gives Congress the power to collect income taxes, went into effect in 1913.
  • Communists seized power in Czechoslovakia in 1948.
  • Cassius Clay (who later changed his name to Muhammad Ali) became the world heavyweight boxing champion in 1964.

Today At Utah Policy

Lt. Gov. Cox on Medicaid, Count My Vote and John Swallow (Video)
Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox says he hasn't faced much of a learning curve moving from the legislature to the executive branch, but he has had to adjust to the scope of the work....

You Have Got to See This Video from Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox's High School Days
Ah, the wonders of the internets! We dug up this amazingcampaign video of Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox when he was running for student body president of North Sanpete High School in 1992 and asked him about it....

Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox Plays the Utah Policy 'Lightning Round'
Utah Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox has just 60 seconds to answer as many stupid questions as possible. It's the Utah Policy "Lightning Round."...

Sparks Fly in House Rules Committee Meeting
Ahh, the Utah Legislature -- where an arcane rule can be used to stop a vote on another rule that you may not like....

Legislators to Meet with Members of Utah's LGBT Community (Video)
Sens. Jim Dabakis and Steve Urquhart are hosting a conversation between Utah leaders and members of the LGBT community on Wednesday evening.Dabakis says the forum is an opportunity to open a dialogue that didn't exist before."Many of our legislators have never met a transgen...

Proposed Legislation Would Make it Harder to Get Citizen Initiatives on the Ballot
While it may be a small change, the Utah Legislature has a bill before it, introducedMonday, that could make it more difficult for citizen initiative petition or referendum supporters to gather the number of voter signatures required to get their measures on the ballot....

New Media/Political Partnership Aims to Foster More Political Debates
Flash back to 2012 when when Dan Liljenquist was desperately trying to get Orrin Hatch to debate ahead of their GOP primary matchup....

Rep. Greg Hughes vs. the Utah Policy 'Lightning Round'
With just 60-seconds to answer as many stupid questions as possible, Rep. Greg Hughes plays the "Lightning Round."...

Hughes Discusses Preschool Education, Breathalyzers and Medicaid (Video)
Rep. Greg Hughes (R-Draper) says he's not surprised his plan to expand preschool education to at-risk kids has run into some opposition, but he's confident once people understand what he's trying to do, it will pass....

Featured Items

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: House panel should not duck vote on bill to allow abstentions

Utah bill would add teeth to campaign-disclosure law

Utah Legislature: Vote up or down - conflict or not

Concerns remain over bill to protect voter info

Concerns remain over bill to protect voter info

Unlike Mitt Romney, Jason Chaffetz opposes Count My Vote

Tax credit for riding public transit advances in Utah House

Hard-fought Utah immigration laws may be repealed

Utah's Herbert presses Obama for drought help for the West

Payday loan reform bill flies through House

Utah bill to impose fees on solar power users advances

Utah Legislature leaves stream access issue up to the courts

Prison relocation clears House committee

Bill to grow Utah's autism lottery edging closer to passage

Utah GOP alternative to Medicaid expansion advances

No vote on Utah conflict of interest bill thanks to rule technicality

Roadside panhandling bill would also ban 'honk and wave,' 'fill the boot'

Deseret News

Editorial: Administrative subpeonas

Senate panel approves changes to school grading

Utah State Prison move gets a boost from House committee

House passes bill increasing parent review of test materials

New commission aims to engage Utah political candidates in debate

House panel amends, passes bill to limit access to Utah voter data

Senate gives preliminary approval to bill extending school day for children in poverty

'Revenge porn' closer to being criminalized in Utah

Bill: Sheriffs are primary state law enforcers on federal land

Rep. Jason Chaffetz tells Utah lawmakers he backs caucus system

Medicaid waiver for autism treatment gets nod from Senate committee

House committee approves Medicaid expansion alternative

Proposal to create direct, nonpartisan State School Board elections clears committee

Gov. Herbert encouraged by Obama pledge to work with states on Medicaid expansion

Bill would impose fine for late campaign finance reporting

Utah State Prison move gets a boost from House committee

House passes bill increasing parent review of test materials

Charter school students visit lawmakers on Capitol Hill

National Headlines

Pentagon's Chuck Hagel plans to downsize US military (BBC News)

Governors' White House visit includes hints of 2016 campaign (Los Angeles Times)

Harry Reid's new game plan: Some bipartisanship (Politico)

Sen. Ron Calderon surrenders to authorities in corruption case (Los Angeles Times)

Supreme Court declines to review Montana gun law (Associated Press)

Obama says expects Keystone decision in next couple months: Oklahoma governor (Reuters)

Justices question Obama climate change regulations (Reuters)

Eric Holder: Consumers must be notified about data breaches (CBS News)

Georgia bill: Ban driver's licenses for immigrants without legal status (Atlanta Journal-Constitution)

Jeb Bush says he and Clinton would have to overcome last names (USA Today)

More radiation detected near New Mexico nuke site (Associated Press)

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