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Situational awareness - January 26, 2018

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City. 

Subscribe to our podcast to get our interviews with Utah political newsmakers and "Bernick and Schott on politics." Hosts Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick have more than 60 years combined experience covering Utah politics, so they bring you knowledge and insight that's unprecedented. You can subscribe on iTunes, Google Play, and Stitcher.

Romney will reportedly announce his US Senate bid next week. Lawmakers may consider a modest tax cut. Trump tried to fire the special counsel in June.

Tick Tock:

Join Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick for a Facebook Live video this morning at 9. We'll discuss the latest news from the Utah Legislature and take your questions. See you on our Facebook page later this morning.

If you have any story ideas, tips, suggestions or complaints, I'm always available at bschott@utahpolicy.com.

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Here's what's driving the day:

SCOOP! Romney expected to announce his campaign next week, take signature route to the ballot

Sources close to Mitt Romney tell us that the former GOP presidential candidate is readying to launch his U.S. Senate campaign next week. Romney will also take the signature route to the ballot, but it's not known if he'll go through the GOP convention as well. Romney will spend about $200,000 to gather the 28,000 signatures, and the process should take three weeks [Utah Policy]. 

New Senate President in 2019

Current Senate President Wayne Niederhauser, R-Sandy, says he's not planning on running for another two-year term as Utah Senate President, although he will run for another term on the Hill in 2018. Niederhauser has been president for six years [Utah Policy].

Week in review

The Utah Legislature gets back to work, budget cuts and surpluses, Gary Herbert, Mitt Romney, abortion bills, and conspiracy theories. Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott break down a fast-paced week in Utah politics [Utah Policy]. The discussion is also available as a podcast [Utah Policy].

Odds and ends from week one

Bob Bernick sifts through a few tidbits left over in his notebook from week one of the 2018 session [Utah Policy].

Time zone snafu

Sen. Wayne Harper, R-Taylorsville, wants to move Utah off of daylight savings time by putting the state in the central time zone, but his proposal has a big problem [Utah Policy].

Other Utah headlines:

National headlines:

On this day in history:

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Today At Utah Policy

Sources: Romney expected to announce Senate bid next week, will gather signatures to get on the 2018 ballot

Sources close to Mitt Romney tell UtahPolicy.com that the former GOP presidential nominee will announce next week that he is running for the U.S. Senate this year....

It feels like we're on meth! - Bernick and Schott on politics Ep. 358

The 2018 Utah Legislature is off at breakneck speed....

Bob Bernick's notebook: Odds and ends from The Hill

Several items worthy of comment this week:...

'Scene' on the Hill - Day #4

A quick look behind the scenes of the 2018 Utah Legislature from our reporters....

Proposed daylight savings time resolution has a huge problem

There is a big problem with a proposed resolution that intends to do end the battle over whether Utah should ditch daylight savings time....

Weekly survey: Who will win the 2018 US Senate race?

Of all the declared and probable candidates for Utah's open US Senate seat, who do you think is the most likely to win in November? Vote now in our weekly survey....

Niederhauser likely not running for another term as Senate President

We already know there will be a new House Speaker next year on Utah's Capitol Hill. It looks like the Senate President's chair will be up for grabs too....

Podcast: Bernick and Schott on politics Ep. 358

Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott break down a jam-packed week in Utah politics....

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Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Outdoor Notes--Tribune: At Denver's first Outdoor Retailer show, conservationists say leaving behind Utah's 'all-out assault on public lands' is 'emancipating'--Tribune: Another Utah state park earns distinction as a top place to see the stars--Tribune: Deadline nears for Ut...

WTC Utah pitch competition awards first place to inWhatLanguage
inWhatLanguage competed against seven other companies to take first place at World Trade Center Utah's Export Acceleration Grant Pitch Competition. During the event, JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced it would contribute $150,000 to continue the Export Acceleration Grant thr...

SLCC Business Incubator hosts first Utah Podcast Summit
The Business Incubator at Salt Lake Community College will host the first Utah Podcast Summit Feb. 2, 8 a.m. to 2 p.m at SLCC's Miller Campus....

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Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Michelle Quist: LDS Church lobbyists could build bridges in the Utah Legislature

Op-ed: Utah judges need a system to assess pre-trial risks

Editorial: Two (small) ways to fight poverty in Utah

Trump's tariffs are just a 'bump in the road' to Utah's fast-growing solar companies

Down syndrome abortion bill may be unconstitutional, but lawmakers move forward anyway

Gehrke: Our leaders will be judged by future Utahns, and that's not a bad thing

Mia Love has a small lead over Ben McAdams in 'exceptionally close race' to represent Utah in Congress, new poll shows

Legislators propose radical changes for transportation, transit - including a tax hike

Utah lawmakers vote to prevent blood-draw showdowns like the one that led to the infamous arrest of a nurse

Utah House votes to do away with state 'porn czar' office

Utah can help women and the poor by eliminating food tax, voting to cover birth control, religious leaders and lawmakers say

Other states' voter rolls swelled with automatic registration. Now a Republican senator wants to see the same happen in Utah.

With nearly 3 years until 2020 election, deep-red Utah gets its first visit from a presidential candidate - a little-known Democrat

Utah lawmakers want to prohibit panhandling on more roads

The 'below-average Joe' will pay more, and Utah may get an additional $80 million because of the new tax law

Deseret News

Jay Evensen: Are cities grabbing power from Washington?

Op-ed: Is our school curriculum our boss or our servant?

Editorial: Utah bill is a step toward greater cultural compassion for children with Down syndrome

William B. Smart, former Deseret News editor and general manager, dies at age 95

Mitt Romney making plans to launch Senate bid as early as next week

Utah lawmakers launch series of pro-family bills

Utah House passes bill requiring police to get warrant before blood draw

Stress, burnout among reasons why teachers leave, survey says

Bid to ban CO gas chambers at Utah animal shelters fails again

House panel endorses bill to ban abortion when motivation is Down syndrome

Utah lawmakers cautious about $25M-$80M gain from federal tax cuts

Leg committee approves change to allow autonomous truck platooning on Utah roads

Big changes in transportation could face rough road this session

Audit finds Utah division spending more despite keeping fewer kids in custody

'One size doesn't fit all': Utah charter schools celebrate choice at rally

Here's how faith leaders are reflecting on Trump's first year in office


Editorial: The actual state of Utah County (Daily Herald)

Quiz: How much do you know about the Utah Legislature? (Daily Herald)

Ogden boosts police pay 'to slow the bleeding,' compete with other departments (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

DOJ recovers missing text messages between anti-Trump FBI agents Strzok and Page (FOX News)

Enviros Push Meat Tax (ATR)

The Most Polarizing Brands in America (Morning Consult)

Iran's Fast Boats Stop Harassing U.S. Navy, Baffling Military (Wall Street Journal)

Trump Proposes Citizenship for Dreamers in Exchange for Wall, Other Concessions (Wall Street Journal)

The Hawaii Employee Who Sent The False Missile Alert Is Refusing To Cooperate With The Investigation (BuzzFeed)

The war to confirm Trump's judicial nominees is heating up again (Business Insider)

Trump plans to sign order keeping Gitmo open, leaked doc reveals (Politico)

GOP Lawmaker Seeks to More Than Double High-Skilled Visas (Bloomberg)

Home Depot announces bonuses for 400000 workers after tax cut (Washington Examiner)

ESPN puts Nate Silver's site up for sale (Politico)

Wise Words


"Rank does not confer privilege or give power. It imposes responsibility." Peter Drucker

Lighter Side


"The Pentagon is reportedly considering nuclear retaliation as a response to cyberattacks by hackers. The biggest challenge is building missiles that can penetrate a mother's basement." Conan O'Brien

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