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Situational awareness - January 29, 2019

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. 

Tuesday's news at a glance: Cox, Chaffetz lead the pack in Utah's 2020 gubernatorial race, but more than a quarter of Utahns are undecided. Utahns want the legislature to spend the state's big budget surplus on education. The government shutdown cost the economy $11 billion.

Talk to us! Send us your news tips, suggestions, complaints or feedback here

The UtahPolicy.com daily newsletter gets you up to speed on the top local and national news about politics and public policy. Our news is curated by Managing Editor Bryan Schott, along with help from Golden Webb. ((Click here to subscribe))


Today is the 29th day of the year. There are 336 days remaining in 2019.

44 days until the final day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (3/14/2019)

95 days to the Utah State Republican Party Organizing Convention (5/4/2019)

125 days until the municipal election filing period opens (6/3/2019)

129 days until the municipal election filing period ends (6/7/2019)

196 days to the 2019 Utah primary elections (8/13/2019)

280 days to the 2019 municipal elections (11/5/2019)

363 days to the first day of the 2020 Utah Legislature (1/27/2020)

371 days to the 2020 Iowa Caucuses (2/3/2020)

639 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_12.jpgPoll: Utahns want lawmakers to spend the state's big budget surplus on education

Most Utahns agree with GOP Gov. Gary Herbert the Legislature should give a big tax cut this year....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_10.jpgProposed bill lowers the threshold for citizen initiatives to get on the ballot

 Rep. Steve Handy, a supporter of the citizen initiative process, has introduced a bill that would slightly lower the bar to getting a petition on the ballot....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_09.jpgLyman introduces bill to punish the 'illegal' closure of a public road

It didn't take freshman Rep. Phil Lyman long to make his presence known in the 2019 Legislature he introduced a bill Monday that could throw in jail anyone who "illegally" closes a public road in the state....
images/1000px_Mugs/Chaffetz_Cox_01.jpgPoll: Cox, Chaffetz lead the 2020 gubernatorial pack, but more than a quarter of Utahns are undecided

The 2020 gubernatorial race is still a long way off, but a new UtahPolicy.com survey suggests Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox and Fox News commentator Jason Chaffetz are the frontrunners for he GOP nomination....
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20190128__Opening_Day.jpgUtah House and Senate waste no time getting down to business on opening day

 New Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson upped the ante on Gov. Gary Herbert on Monday, calling for an at least $225 million tax cut this year, more than Herbert's $200 million....
images/1000px_Mugs/Brad_Wilson_01.jpgPodcast: Previewing the 2019 Utah Legislature with House Speaker Brad Wilson

New Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson joins Managing Editor Bryan Schott to discuss the 2019 Utah Legislature....
images/1000px_Mugs/Stuart_Adams_01.pngPodcast: Previewing the 2019 Legislature with Senate President Stuart Adams

Utah Senate President Stuart Adams sits down with Managing Editor Bryan Schott to preview the 2019 Utah Legislature....
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190128_Stewart_Fox.jpgStewart: Democrats have made it clear 'they don't care about border security' or 'Dreamers'

Rep. Chris Stewart said Monday morning he's pleased the government shutdown is over, but he's pessimistic that Republicans and Democrats will be able to come to any sort of agreement over funding for border security....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_House_Chamber_01.jpgWilson shakes up House seating assignments

Utah House Speaker Brad Wilson says he wants to make the House a kinder gentler place in 2019 and 2020, with more options for veteran members to mentor new members, and better communications between the majority Republicans and minority Democrats....
images/Resized_Mugshots/Zachary_Schofield.jpgGuest opinion: Legislature can help Utahns solve growth issues

Utah is growing it's one of the fastest-growing states in the country. This is great news, but it also presents the Legislature with unique issues. This year, the Legislature has the opportunity to pursue solutions to our state's growing pains that will preserve and enhance...
images/1000px_Logos/Utah_Community_Builders_Logo.jpgOpening more doors: Neighborhood House offers safe place to learn, grow

 For 124 years, Neighborhood House has been serving hundreds of Utahns from age 15-months to 100 years old....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_08.jpgPoll: Plurality of Utahns support Herbert's sales tax cut proposal

Utahns are split over GOP Gov. Gary Herbert's suggested $200 million tax cut this year, a new UtahPolicy.com poll shows....
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Tax_Cut_01.jpgWill Utah lawmakers pass a tax cut this year? Our 'Political Insiders' have some thoughts...

 What will lawmakers do with the massive $1.3 billion projected budget surplus this year? Some lawmakers are pushing for a tax cut with some of that money....
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190127_McAdams_Fox.jpgMcAdams says he wants to work toward a bipartisan solution for border security

 New Utah congressman Ben McAdams said Sunday morning he believes the newly elected Democrats in Congress are ready to work with Republicans to get things done....

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Deseret News

Op-ed: How to find consensus on beer and public safety

Jay Evensen: Would more parking at the Utah State Capitol be bad for the air?

Editorial: Difficult decisions await Utah lawmakers this year

New Utah House speaker calls for even larger tax rate cut as Legislature convenes

Utahns rally against changes to Proposition 3

Utah lawmakers intend to fight voter-approved Medicaid expansion

Bill to make lying about emotional support animals a misdemeanor passes in Utah House

Utah State Board of Education requests more money for school safety, big IT upgrade

Utah's chief justice emphasizes judicial innovations in speech to Legislature

How much did Utah spend to keep state's national parks open during shutdown?

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: Targeting Prop 3 is an act of cruelty

Utahns give high marks to Legislature and Gov. Herbert - maybe because of contrast with federal shutdown and divided government

As Utah dries up, lawmakers look for smarter ways to transfer, use - and not use - water

New Utah House speaker kicks off legislative session with call for historic tax cut of at least $225 million

Utah Sen. Mitt Romney elected president of secret Washington group of politicians, business leaders

The United Utah Party pushes for all legislative bills to be made public

'People would die': Medicaid expansion supporters rally at Utah Capitol against plans to delay, repeal or replace voter-approved initiative


Cache delegation working on bills affecting retirees, housing (Logan Herald Journal)


17 days until the government runs out of funding...again.

The shutdown cost the economy $11 billion. The Congressional Budget Office says the economy will never recover about $3 billion of that loss. The CBO reported Monday that the shutdown would lead to slower economic growth - https://nyti.ms/2G88oKD

Senate Republicans may block Trump from another shutdown. The Senate GOP is not keen on another government shutdown next month, and they're already starting to look for alternatives if they can't pass a funding deal by Feb. 15 - https://politi.co/2GcMWE2

Mueller's investigation is close to being finished. Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker said Monday he had been "fully briefed" on Mueller's probe into connections between the Trump campaign and Russia - https://wapo.st/2G9zrp0

State of the Union back on. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi invited Presiden Donald Trump to deliver his State of the Union address next week on February 5 - https://wapo.st/2G8BB83

Polls! Polls! Polls!

  • Danger brewing for President Donald Trump's re-election chances. A new poll shows 56% of Americans said they would "definitely not vote for him" in 2020. Meanwhile, the 2020 Democratic presidential race is wide open. 56% of Democrats did not name a favored candidate when asked who they would support next year. Former vice president Joe Biden and Sen. Kamala Harris were the most popular choices - https://wapo.st/2G5loAG
  • 54% of Americans want President Trump and Republicans in Congress to abandon their efforts to build a wall on the southern border. 72% believe it's at least somewhat likely there will be another government shutdown within a month - http://bit.ly/2G8C0Y7

  • By a 2-1 margin, Americans oppose President Trump using an emergency declaration to build his wall on the U.S.-Mexico border - http://bit.ly/2G5ZDRa

  • 60% of Americans say Democrats in the House should use their subpoena power to obtain and release President Trump's tax returns - http://bit.ly/2G607H8

Howard Schultz flirts with an independent White House bid. The billionaire former chief executive of Starbucks says he will cross the country over the next three months before deciding on whether to mount an independent campaign for president - https://nyti.ms/2G8E0jl

  • President Trump tweeted on Monday that Schultz lacks the "guts" and smarts to run for president - https://wapo.st/2G7hpDz

  • Fellow billionaire and former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg said Schultz running as an independent is a horrible idea that will likely lead to President Trump's re-election - http://bit.ly/2G5Th4l

  • Advisers to Schultz say he could "bail out" the Democrats if they end up nominating someone in 2020 who is too far to the left - https://politi.co/2GcMuWm

  • Hecklers attacked Schultz at an event in New York Monday. One person yelled "Don't help elect Trump, you egotistical billionaire a**hole," before being escorted from the room - http://bit.ly/2G9x05O

The U.S. will borrow $1 trillion next year. That eye-popping number is needed to finance the nearly $16 trillion national debt - https://bloom.bg/2G9AS6S

Trump administration ratchets up pressure on Venezuela. The administration announced economic sanctions against the country to force President Nicolas Maduro from power. National security adviser John Bolton has suggested the U.S. could send 5,000 troops to neighboring Colombia - https://wapo.st/2G7fbEj

Deep freeze hitting the midwest. A burst of warmer than usual air in the Arctic is sending the polar vortex across the middle of the country this week, which will bring the coldest temperatures in more than a generation - https://cnn.it/2G5RpbP

Measles is making a comeback. Because of a growing anti-vaccination movement, a measles outbreak is hitting the Pacific Northwest and New York. Washington State declared a state of emergency after 36 cases were reported Monday - http://bit.ly/2G6doiQ

Yikes! A bug in the iPhone's FaceTime software lets other people listen in on your call even if they don't pick up a call. Apple says they will release a software fix later this week - https://cnn.it/2G5RXhT


1820 - Britain's King George III, who lost the American colonies, died at the age of 82.

1850 - Henry Clay introduces the Compromise of 1850 to the U.S. Congress. 

1861 - Kansas is admitted as the 34th state.

1886 - German Karl Benz was awarded a patent for the gasoline-driven automobile.

1907 - Charles Curtis of Kansas becomes the first Native American U.S. Senator

1980 - The Rubik's Cube makes its international debut at the Ideal Toy Corp. in London.

2002 - In his State of the Union address, President George W. Bush described "regimes that sponsor terror" as an Axis of evil, in which he includes Iraq, Iran and North Korea.

2009 - Governor of Illinois Rod Blagojevich is removed from office following his conviction on several corruption charges.

Policy News

Curtis, House Foreign Affairs Committee introduce cyber diplomacy bill
Rep. John Curtis (R-UT) joined a group of his colleagues from the House Foreign Affairs Committee in introducing H.R. 739, to support United States international cyber diplomacy....
McAdams calls on House Democratic leadership to prioritize infrastructure
 Congressman Ben McAdams has signed a letter to the House Speaker and Majority Leader asking for quick movement on a series of infrastructure bills to address long-running needs in Utah and across the United States. ...
images/1000px_Logos/GOED_Logo_1000.pngDiesel Tech Pathways Program shifts into high gear expanding into two counties
The Utah Governor's Office of Economic Development, diesel industry leaders and education leaders announced the expansion of the Utah Diesel Technician Pathways program to now include the Davis and Tooele tech colleges in partnership with their corresponding school districts...
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpg2019 Clear the Air Challenge kickoff
The Salt Lake Chamber, along with its clean air partners UCAIR and TravelWise, kicked off the 10th Annual Clear the Air Challenge....
Board of Regents announces expansion of college access advising program
Thirty-three Utah high schools will have a full-time, permanent college access advisor this fall, the Utah Board of Regents announced at its meeting at Utah Valley University....

More National Headlines

Half of Americans Wouldn't Support Trump Impeachment, Have Little Faith in Fairness of Mueller Report, Says New Poll (Newsweek)

US sanctions Venezuelan state-owned oil company as Maduro seeks talks with Trump (ABC News)

Footage Of Shirtless Bernie Sanders Drunkenly Singing With Soviets In '88 Surfaces (Forward)

Impeachment cries cloud Democrats' vow to leave Mueller alone (Politico)

March for Life apologizes to Covington Catholic teens for 'rush to judgment' (Washington Times)

What science could teach Ocasio-Cortez about climate change (New York Post)

What history teaches us about raising taxes on the rich (New York Post)

The case for Schultz: He could save Democrats from far-left nominee (Politico)

Whitaker: Mueller probe is 'close to being completed' (FOX News)

US unveils its criminal case against Huawei, alleging China giant stole trade secrets and violated Iran sanctions (CNN)

Dems urge ex-Starbucks CEO Howard Schultz not to run for president (New York Post)

Wise Words

Next Generation

"Leadership is not about the next election, it's about the next generation." Simon Sinek

Lighter Side

Air Safety

"Without properly staffed air-traffic control, pilots are asking how safe it is to fly. And Spirit Airlines pilots are asking, 'What's air-traffic control?'" -TREVOR NOAH

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