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Situational awareness - February 12, 2020

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City


There are 21 working days remaining in the 2020 Utah Legislature

10 days to the Nevada Democratic caucuses (2/22/2022)

17 days to the South Carolina Democratic primary (2/29/2020)

20 days to the Utah presidential primaries (3/3/2020)

29 days to the final day of the 2020 Utah Legislature (3/12/2020)

139 days to the 2020 Utah primary elections (6/30/2020)

265 Days to the 2020 election (11/3/2020)

348 days to the start of the 2021 Utah Legislature (1/25/2021)

Here are the stories you need to pay attention to this morning:

  • Most Utahns believe lobbyists have a great deal of influence over the Utah Legislature.
  • House Republicans squash an effort to censure Mitt Romney over his impeachment vote.
  • Bernie Sanders ekes out a win in New Hampshire.

Thanks for subscribing to Utah's must-read daily political news rundown.

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_32.jpgMost Utahns believe lobbyists have a great amount of influence on lawmakers
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Utahns don't think much of the GOP-controlled Utah Legislature.
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgThe never ending story - Bernick and Schott on politics podcast
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick discuss the latest political headlines from the Beehive State.
images/1000px_Mugs/Chris_Stewart_02.jpgAdvisers pushing Trump to nominate Stewart for top intelligence post
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Rep. Chris Stewart has emerged as a top candidate to be the next director of national intelligence in the Trump administration.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt__Romney_06.jpgHouse Republicans quash measures to censure Romney and recall U.S. Senators
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Utah House leaders Tuesday put the kibosh on a proposal to censure Sen. Mitt Romney for voting to convict President Donald Trump last week. A bill to create a mechanism for recalling U.S. Senators is also dead after a closed meeting of House Republicans. 
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_30.jpgLegislature suspends Bernick media credential
By UtahPolicy.com staff
On Tuesday morning, the Utah Legislature took the action of suspending UtahPolicy.com Contributing Editor Bob Bernick's media credential.
images/1000px_Mugs/Ben_McAdams_02.jpgMcAdams' job approval ratings dropped by double-digits during impeachment, new poll finds
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Rep. Ben McAdams has seen his approval rating among 4th District voters drop 11 points since October of last year according to a new Utah Political Trends poll.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_11.jpgRomney was uninvited from CPAC because organizers fear for his safety
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Sen. Mitt Romney, who has been the target of Republican scorn after casting the lone GOP vote in favor of President Donald Trump's impeachment, is now facing threats of physical violence against him.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_10.jpgSome Utah Republicans want Mitt Romney to support President Trump or resign
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
A group of Utah Republican Party Central Committee members wants to censure Sen. Mitt Romney for voting to remove President Donald Trump for office. Their proposed resolution calls on Romney to support Trump's agenda or resign from office. 
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Fishing_01.jpgOne lawmaker wants to guarantee Utahns a Constitutional right to hunt and fish
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
A rural Utah lawmaker wants to amend the state Constitution to specifically protect the right to hunt, fish and otherwise take wildlife in a traditional manner.
images/1000px_Screenshots/20200210_Trump_CNN.jpgVideo: Trump to Herbert about Romney: 'You keep him, we don't want him'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
During a White House event on Monday, President Donald Trump continued his verbal assault on Sen. Mitt Romney, telling Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, "You keep him."
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_14.jpgLegislative attorneys may be getting a pay raise soon under proposed bill
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Legislative attorneys, who have been at their job for years, may well be getting a pay raise shortly.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_08.jpgLegislative Republicans seeking a quick, and quiet, exit from Romney impeachment controversy
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Perhaps worried that a resolution praising GOP President Donald Trump could draw Democratic anti-Trump comments -- picked up by the media -- in a committee or floor debate, it looks like Republican leaders will settle on a "citation" in the president's honor, which isn't open to such pesky opposition.
images/mugs/Doug_Owens_03.jpgDoug Owens eyeing run for Utah House in 2020
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Two-time Democratic congressional nominee Doug Owens says he's thinking about jumping into the 2020 election, but he doesn't have his eye on Washington anymore.
images/1000px_Mugs/Stewart_McAdams_01.jpgPoll suggests Reps. Chris Stewart and Ben McAdams could have tough re-election campaigns in November
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
GOP U.S. Rep. Chris Stewart might want to start spending more time and money working on his re-election bid this year.

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Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Bernie takes the W

Sen. Bernie Sanders edged out Pete Buttigieg in the New Hampshire primary Tuesday night. Sen. Amy Klobuchar surged to a third-place finish. Up next is the Nevada caucuses [Politico].

Former Vice President Joe Biden finished in 5th place in New Hampshire. His campaign team is starting to panic [Politico].

Pete Buttigieg currently has one more delegate than Bernie Sanders. It takes 1,991 delegates to win the nomination [NPR].

Andrew Yang and Sen. Michael Bennett both dropped out of the Democratic presidential race after finishing far behind the pack in New Hampshire [NBC News].

President Donald Trump easily won the Republican primary in New Hampshire [NBC News].

Justice Department

Four career federal prosecutors quit the Roger Stone case after senior Justice Department officials intervened to recommend a more lenient sentence for Stone after President Trump complained [New York Times].

Attorney General William Barr intervened last month to help change the government's sentencing recommendations for President Trump's national security adviser Michael Flynn, who pleaded guilty to lying to the FBI. Senior Justice Department officials changed the recommendation from six months in jail to just probation for Flynn [NBC News].

President Trump also abruptly pulled the nomination of former U.S. attorney for D.C. Jessie Liu to a Treasury Department post abruptly on Tuesday. Liu oversaw the criminal investigation into former acting FBI director Andrew McCabe [Axios].

Democrats in Congress have few weapons available to counter Trump's intervention in the Roger Stone case [Politico].

2020 election

Most Americans say they expect President Trump to be re-elected in 2020 [Monmouth University].

Election security

Senate Republicans blocked three election security-related bills on Tuesday [The Hill].


U.S. household debt topped $14 trillion for the first time ever as Americans ramped up their borrowing to buy homes or refinance mortgages [Bloomberg].


Chinese officials say the outbreak may be over by April [Reuters].

The virus has killed more than 1,100 people and infected more than 45,000 [CNN].


Policy News

images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgExecutives optimistic on the future of Utah's economy
The CEOutlook Confidence Index increased from 53.3 in 2019-Q3 to 61.2 for 2019-Q4, as Utah executives report optimism towards the state's economy, according to the Salt Lake Chamber's 2019 fourth-quarter CEOutlook 2019 survey released today.
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgAttend the Salt Lake Chamber's Professional Development Series on Mastering Media Management
Whether you're a communications professional or corporate executive, effective media management is essential for success in today's competitive world. In 2020, the Salt Lake Chamber will offer four workshops on Mastering Media Management to help individuals bring together innate talents, formal training and real-world experiences to master effective communications.

More National Headlines


1541 - Santiago, Chile, was founded.

1733 - Englishman James Oglethorpe founds Georgia and its first city at Savannah.

1870 - The Utah Territory grants women the right to vote.

1909 - The National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) is founded.

1914 - The first stone of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. is put into place.

1963 - Construction begins on the Gateway Arch in St. Louis.

1998 - A U.S. federal judge declared the presidential line-item veto was unconstitutional.

1999 - President Bill Clinton is acquitted by the U.S. Senate in his impeachment trial.

2000 - Charles Schulz, creator of the "Peanuts" comic strip, died of colon cancer at age 77.

Wise Words


"Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant."Robert Louis Stevenson

Lighter Side

National Prayer Breakfast

"Before his victory speech, Trump spoke at the National Prayer Breakfast, which was a tough decision, because on the one hand, he doesn't like to pray, but on the other hand, he loves breakfast. So he went. He used it as an opportunity to lash out at those who oppose him, just as Jesus would have done." - JIMMY KIMMEL

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