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Situational awareness - October 24, 2018

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City.

There was a winner of the $1.6 billion Mega Millions jackpot last night, and it obviously wasn't me since I'm at work this morning. You still have a shot at the $620 million Powerball jackpot tonight.

President Trump says there's a "red wave" coming in November that will keep Republicans in power, but Democrats might have something to say about that. What do you think? Enter our 2018 Election Challenge and you could win a $50 Amazon gift cardhttp://bit.ly/2Ed4dhj

Executive summary: Who is spending the most on Facebook political ads in Utah? John Curtis and James Singer engage in the best debate of 2018. The midterm elections could have the largest gender gap in history.


The Capitol Steps

Today At Utah Policy

images/Shutterstock_article_photos/Facebook_Ads_01.jpgAnalysis: Who is spending the most on Facebook political advertising in Utah?

You've probably seen dozens, maybe even hundreds of political ads on Facebook this campaign season. The social media platform allows candidates and political groups to reach voters with ads for significantly less money than traditional television and radio advertising. It's ...
images/Resized_Mugshots/20181023_Curtis_Singer_Debate.jpgReal differences emerge in 3rd District debate between Curtis and Singer

If you want to see what a real, competent TV candidate debate looks like, you should have seen Tuesday night's 3rd Congressional District event between GOP Rep. John Curtis and Democratic challenger James Singer, put on by the Utah Debate Commission at Utah Valley Unive...
images/Resized_Mugshots/Love_McAdams_10.jpgNational stakes keep getting higher in Love/McAdams race

Weird things are happening in this mid-term election....
images/articles/Migrant_Caravan.jpgWeekly survey: How will the 'migrant caravan' controversy play in November?

A "migrant caravan" of people fleeing violence in Honduras is heading north toward the southern U.S. border. President Trump is stoking outrage about the issue. Do you think the controversy will help Republicans or Democrats in November? Vote now in our weekly survey....
images/Shutterstock_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_08.jpgGov. Herbert appoints Dianna Gibson to the Third District Court

Gov. Gary R. Herbert has appointed Dianna Gibson as a judge for the Third District Court....
images/Shutterstock_Logos/ElectionChallenge-500.jpgEnter the UtahPolicy.com 2018 Election Challenge

Enter our 2018 Election Challenge and you could win a $50 Amazon gift card....

better boundaries


Deseret News

Op-ed: Why Utah housing concerns center on Salt Lake County, renters

Once shunned, officers now encouraged to get help after shootings

With emphasis on de-escalation, why so many police shootings in Utah?

'Crisp' Curtis, Singer debate for Utah's 3rd Congressional District showcases civility, not conflict

Utah Democrats make biggest gains in registrations as state looks to reverse dismal voting record

Salt Lake County mayor again prioritizes Oxbow Jail, public safety in 2019 budget proposal

3rd District race: John Curtis touts accomplishments; James Singer seeks to expand social safety net

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: The Tribune has a Sim Gill problem

Editorial: Don't throw away Love's experience

Utahns are split on the #MeToo movement - and the highly politicized Supreme Court hearings made more people wary

Republican Rep. John Curtis and Democrat James Singer debate in race for Utah's 3rd District

Salt Lake County mayor presents $1.5 billion budget plan he says will prioritize public safety with no tax increase

New group forms to oppose balance of power shift in Utah's Capitol. It's led by Gov. Gary Herbert's ex-campaign manager.

Sen. Jim Dabakis says at least one Utah lawmaker should try marijuana before voting on medical cannabis. So he filmed himself sampling an edible.


Fans, foes of Prop 3 speak to potential impacts of expanding Medicaid (Daily Herald)

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  • Officials in Washington are scrambling to make President Trump's false assertions real. Most recently, Vice President Mike Pence, the White House and Department of Homeland Security rushed to back up Trump's unsubstantiated claim that "unknown Middle Easterners" were part of a migrant caravan in Central America. Trump admitted Tuesday that there's no proof - https://wapo.st/2R8vjHO

  • A predicted "blue wave" may be slipping away from Democrats as polling shows Republican enthusiasm surging across the country - http://bit.ly/2RbBTgF

  • Millions of voters have already cast a ballot in the 2018 midterms. Turnout is surging, but we can't tell too much from those numbers yet - https://nyti.ms/2R9p0Up

  • The 2018 midterms could have the largest gender gap for a midterm election ever, with an average 26-point difference between men and women - https://cnn.it/2RgRfRp

  • President Trump's job approval rating rises to 44% in the latest Gallup poll - http://bit.ly/2Ra5sPE

  • Is your cell phone blowing up with political text messages? You're not alone as text messaging is becoming the go-to method for campaigns to reach voters - http://bit.ly/2RelA2X

  • President Trump is proving to be a boon for some Republicans on the ballot ahead of the 2018 midterms, but he is becoming a liability for others - https://nyti.ms/2R8v5As

  • Facebook and Twitter say they can't detect any signs of Chinese interference in the 2018 election as claimed by President Trump - https://bloom.bg/2RbOS2a

  • Social media platforms are taking steps to help individual states keep disinformation from spreading - http://bit.ly/2R8xsDm

  • Former President Barack Obama seemed to denounce President Trump at a rally in Nevada saying he believed in a "fact-based reality" - http://bit.ly/2R5Lgyo

  • President Trump says he will likely hold another summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin in Paris next month - https://cnn.it/2RdZeyx

  • President Trump condemned the Saudi murder of journalist Jamal Khashoggi as "the worst cover-up ever" - https://cnn.it/2R8nzFV

  • The remains of Jamal Khashoggi have reportedly been found in the garden of the Saudi consul's house - http://bit.ly/2RdfIqE

  • The FBI says it cannot find the "100 pictures" of James Comey and Robert Mueller "hugging and kissing each other" that President Trump claimed proved a conflict of interest in the special counsel's investigation - http://bit.ly/2RbbD66

  • Boring but important #1. Trump administration officials are increasingly bypassing the appeals court process to get controversial cases heard by the Supreme Court - https://wapo.st/2RgQGqL

  • Boring but important #2. National Security Advisor John Bolton says there's no chance the Trump administration would reverse its decision to withdraw from a nuclear weapons treaty with Russia - http://bit.ly/2R8oFl1

  • NBC's Megyn Kelly is apologizing after wondering aloud on her TV show why it is inappropriate for white people to wear blackface for Halloween - https://nyti.ms/2R9mUnK

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  • 1648 - The Treaty of Westphalia ended the Thirty Years' War in Europe.

  • 1861 - The first transcontinental telegraph line across the United States is completed.

  • 1901 - Annie Edson Taylor becomes the first person to go over Niagra Falls in a barrel.

  • 1929 - "Black Thursday" stock market crash on the New York Stock Exchange.

  • 1931 - New York City's George Washington Bridge opens to public traffic.

  • 1947 - Walt Disney testifies before the House Un-American Activities Committee, naming Disney employees he believes to be communists.

  • 1962 - The blockade of Cuba went into effect, with a ring of U.S. warships and planes under orders to block by whatever means, further Soviet arms deliveries to Fidel Castro.

  • 2002 - Police arrest John Allen Muhammad and Lee Boyd Malvo, ending the Beltway sniper attacks in the area around Washington, D.C.

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Policy News

images/Resized_Logos/Fox_Files_Logo.pngFox files: 'Leadership lessons'
Last week, I outlined a few things I've been thinking about recently, and I mentioned I'd be sharing some lessons learned....
Utah Public Lands Policy Coordinating Office aims to improve forest health
With over 875 fires during the 2018 fire season, Governor Gary R. Herbert has directed the Utah Public Lands Policy Coordinating Office to work with the U.S. Forest Service to improve the health of Utah's forests....
Cicero Group expands to Texas
Nationally recognized consulting firm Cicero Group has expanded to the Dallas-Fort Worth market with the opening of a new office and announcement of new personnel....

More National Headlines

Caravan could save GOP: 'Manna from heaven' for Trump (Washington Examiner)

Supreme Court blocks deposition of Commerce chief Ross over census question (CNN)

Democrats back Medicare for all in about half of House races they're contesting (USA Today)

Dems divided over Pelosi's 'transitional' Speaker pitch (The Hill)

D.C. attorney general launches investigation into Catholic Church (CNN)

Two Polls Give Republican Challenger the Lead against Joe Donnelly in Indiana Senate Race (National Review)

Countdown to Space Force continues as Trump administration details trajectory of plan (USA Today)

Asian-Americans should be angry about allegations against Harvard (CNN)

Decoding the Slippery Language around Transgender Rights (National Review)

Georgia Democratic gubernatorial candidate Stacey Abrams helped torch state flag during college protest (FOX News)

Trump: Fed chairman 'almost looks like he's happy raising interest rates' (The Hill)

Wise Words


"Efforts and courage are not enough without purpose and direction." John F. Kennedy


Lighter Side

Head Lice

"According to a new poll, Congress is now less popular than head lice, Nickelback, andDonald Trump. In a related story, head lice is insulted that it's being lumped in with Donald Trump and Nickelback." Conan O'Brien


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