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Situational awareness - December 7, 2018

Good morning from Salt Lake City and TGIF!

Thanks for reading Utah's most complete and comprehensive daily political newsletter. We help get you up to speed on the most important local and national political stories of the day. Follow our social media feeds on Twitter and Facebook

We're listening! If you have any news tips, suggestions, complaints, corrections or just want to give us some feedback, feel free to drop us an email.

Executive summary: Love-McAdams race was very expensive. Herbert unveils his budget blueprint. Kelly expected to resign as White House chief of staff.


  • 52 days until the first day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (1/28/2019)

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

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

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

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

  • 333 days to the 2019 municipal elections (11/5/2019)

  • 423 days to the 2020 Iowa Caucuses (2/3/2020)

  • 697 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

  • salt lake chamber fights gender pay gap

    Today At Utah Policy

    images/articles/20181015_Love_McAdams_Debate.jpgBig spenders! Love/McAdams contest cost more than $12 million

    How much does a 694 vote victory cost? How about $12 million?...
    images/Shutterstock_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_19.jpgHerbert's budget cuts sets up a big fight with lawmakers over sales taxes and roads (Updated)

    GOP Gov. Gary Herbert is preparing to take on a sales tax fight that other governors have tried, and failed....
    images/Resized_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_on_Politics_480.jpgEpisode #400! - Bernick and Schott on politics

    It's our 400th episode!...
    images/mugs/bernick-mug.jpgBob Bernick's notebook: Big shakeup in the House

    There's a new sheriff in town, at least as far as the Utah House is concerned....
    images/Shutterstock_Logos/Bernick_Schott_Podcast_05_small.jpgPodcast: Bernick and Schott on politics Ep. 400

    It's our 400th episode!Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott discuss the top stories from this week in Utah politics....
    images/Shutterstock_article_photos/Utah_Money.pngWeekly survey - Utah's budget surplus

    Utah lawmakers will have a $1.3 billion budget surplus next year. What do you think they should do with that money? Let us know in our weekly survey....

    Utah Foundation ad


    Deseret News

    Natalie Gochnour: What Utah's historically low fertility means for the state

    Editorial: On medical cannabis, compassion is wholly compatible with sensible laws

    Patient groups ask court to invalidate Utah's medical marijuana compromise

    Herbert proposes $200 million tax cut - but also new taxes to 'broaden' Utah's shrinking tax base

    Salt Lake County councilman will join race for Salt Lake County mayor

    Utah's school board wants law to address school fees problem

    Air quality in dispute: How Utahns can find collaborative solutions to the air quality problem

    Salt Lake Tribune

    Domestic violence case that helped change Utah polygamy laws ends in plea deal, but wife isn't happy

    Two of the Utah Sheriffs' Association's top annual awards went to law enforcers investigated for violent behavior

    Gov. Gary Herbert says he isn't proposing a food tax hike. His budget plan suggests otherwise.

    UTA seeks comments on proposed Murray-Taylorsville-West Valley City bus rapid transit line

    Medical cannabis advocates suing the state over Prop 2 override have a bigger goal: challenging the Legislature's disregard of the peoples' will

    As winter inversion sets in, Utah Gov. Gary Herbert proposes $100 million in new funding to address air quality


    Breaking Friday morning: CNN is reporting White House chief of staff John Kelly is expected to resign in the coming days. Sources say Kelly and President Trump see their relationship as no longer tenable - https://cnn.it/2rpt6Ni

    • It's another big day in special counsel Robert Mueller's investigation. Friday is the deadline to submit reports about former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort and President Trump's former personal lawyer Michael Cohen - http://bit.ly/2rmOnY4

    • President Trump is blaming his low approval ratings on the Mueller investigation, calling it "presidential harassment." Trump's average approval rating sits at 43.3% - https://politi.co/2rpgPZj 

    • Rudy Giuliani, President Trump's lawyer in the Russia probe, says getting Trump to answer special counsel Robert Mueller's questions was "a nightmare." Giuliani said it took Trump "three weeks to do what would normally take two days" - http://bit.ly/2rpQlqH

    • Whoa! The Trump campaign and the NRA used the same consultant during the 2016 election to target commercials in several TV markets. Newly uncovered documents suggest the two groups may have coordinated their efforts, which is illegal under federal law - http://bit.ly/2rqL95L

    • Congress approved a short-term spending bill to avoid a government shutdown. The bill provides funding through Dec. 21 - https://reut.rs/2roVjUw 

    • President Trump's re-election advisers are worried a recession is on the horizon, which will likely hurt his chances in 2020 - https://politi.co/2roRkar 

    • CNN's headquarters in New York were evacuated on Thursday night following a bomb threat - https://cnn.it/2rypKYJ

    • Republican officials in North Carolina were warned in May about possible election fraud in NC09 when GOP incumbent Robert Pittenger lost his primary by a narrow margin. The race in that district remains uncalled after allegations of election fraud following November's vote. The Democrat in that race, who was losing by 905 votes, has withdrawn his concession - https://wapo.st/2roxPz1 

    • Democrats in the House are threatening to refuse to seat the apparent winner of the disputed congressional race until the claims of election fraud are cleared up - http://bit.ly/2rrwpDQ

    • An undocumented immigrant who worked as a maid at President Trump's New Jersey golf course has come forward to allege physical abuse by her supervisor at the club. She also claims at least two supervisors were aware of her immigration status - https://nyti.ms/2rpND4v

    • President Trump will likely tap William Barr to be the next Attorney General. Barr previously served as Attorney General from 1991 to 1993 under President George H.W. Bush - https://wapo.st/2rnJUEx

    • President Trump is expected to name former Fox News anchor Heather Nauert as the next UN ambassador. Nauert sparked outrage earlier this year when she incorrectly cited the D-Day invasion of Europe by allied forces as an example of the strong relationship between the U.S. and Germany - https://wapo.st/2rnJqyd 

    • Ouch! The Boston Globe says Sen. Elizabeth Warren "missed her moment" in 2016 and should not run for president in 2020 - http://bit.ly/2rrD9l0

    • Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer pens an Op-Ed warning President Trump that Democrats will not sign on to a deal to improve the nation's infrastructure unless steps are taken to address climate change - https://wapo.st/2rpYfR1 

    • The Trump administration is set to open nine million acres to drilling and mining by ending protections for the sage grouse - https://nyti.ms/2rraeO8

    • The EPA is set to roll back an Obama administration coal emissions rule designed to combat climate change - https://cnn.it/2rlIyu2

    • Incoming Democratic member of Congress Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez has as many followers on Twitter as the other 60 Democratic freshman House members combined - http://bit.ly/2rlIbj8 

    • There could be a rush on divorce settlements before the end of the year as a tax deduction for alimony payments expires on Jan. 1 because of the Trump tax cut package - http://bit.ly/2rrYfzC

    • Comedian Kevin Hart is out as host of the Oscars after he refused to apologize for a number of old social media posts that used homophobic language - https://wapo.st/2rnNsXc


    • 1787 - Delaware becomes the first state to ratify the Constitution.

    • 1941 - Attack on Pearl Harbor: The Japanese Navy carries out a surprise attack on the U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii.

    • 1963 - Instant replay makes its debut during the Army-Navy football game.

    • 1972 - Apollo 17, the final Apollo moon mission is launched.

    • 1982 - In Texas, Charles Brooks, Jr., becomes the first person to be executed by lethal injection in the U.S.

    • 1987 - Mikhail Gorbachev became the first Soviet leader to officially visit the United States since 1973.

    • 1999 - The Recording Industry Association of America sues file-sharing service Napster, alleging copyright infringement.

    Policy News

    Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
    Weekend EventOutdoors Report--KSL.com: 3 places to fish this winter - that don't include ice fishing--KSL.com: Cedar Breaks National Monument offers activities for every seasonConcerts-- Davis Master Chorale, Friday, 7 p.m., Layton High School, 440 Wasatch Drive, Layton, $7 ...
    images/Logos/SL-Chamber-Logo.pngCEO success stories: Nathan Rafferty, Ski Utah
    The Salt Lake Chamber has created a new podcast called "CEO Success Stories."...

    More National Headlines

    At '60 Minutes,' Independence Led to Trouble, Investigators Say (New York Times)

    Mediaite's Most Influential in News Media 2018 (Mediaite)

    Senior adviser to Sen. Kamala Harris resigns after report of $400,000 harassment settlement (NBC News)

    Five decades of presidents honor Bush (Los Angeles Times)

    Trump, at Hanukkah reception, condemns anti-Semitism (Politico)

    What the !*?&%!@ is going on with the current economy?! (Washington Post)

    Trump fears political price from oil spike, market turmoil (CNN)

    Wise Words


    "My great concern is not whether you have failed, but whether you are content with your failure." Abraham Lincoln

    Lighter Side


    "So not only is the president a wannabe dictator who thinks he can jail whoever he wants, he also genuinely believes all the insane stuff he sees on Fox News. Trump probably sits there all day watching Fox and shouting to his aides: 'Prosecute Hillary! Stop the caravan! And ask my doctor if Otezla is right for me! Why can't I have Otezla?'" - SETH MEYERS


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