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Situational awareness - February 26, 2019

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City.

Here are the stories we're following today:

  • Lawmakers eyeing a $170 million boost for education funding.
  • Utah could hold their 2020 presidential primary on "Super Tuesday."
  • Congress set to rebuke Trump on emergency declaration.

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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 57th day of the year. There are 308 days remaining in 2019.

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

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

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

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

116 days to the Utah State Democratic Party Organizing Convention (6/22/2019)

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

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

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

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

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

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_08.jpgLawmakers targeting $170 million boost in public education spending

It appears lawmakers are targeting a boost in public education funding this year close to $170 million. That includes fully funding next year's student growth and a boost in the WPU of just over 4 percent....
images/1000px_Mugs/Mike_Winder_Book_01.jpgPodcast: Rep. Mike Winder on his new book, 'Favorite Scriptures of 100 American Leaders'

Rep. Mike Winder is also an accomplished author, penning two previous books about American presidents.His latest book, "Favorite Scriptures of 100 American Leaders," explores the relationship between religion and American political leaders stretching all the way back to the ...
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Voting_Machine.jpgUtah may join 'Super Tuesday' presidential primary date in 2020

Utah may join the 2020 presidential nominating fray in a big way, by holding their presidential primary on "Super Tuesday" in early March....
images/Resized_Logos/Utah_Foundation_Logo_01.jpgUtah Foundation launches new series examining economic development incentives

Utah Foundation releases Public Funds, Private Endeavors: A Primer on Local Economic Development Incentives in Utah. It is the first in a series of reports analyzing Utah's incentive programs at the state and local levels....
Flying cars: A Jetsonian reality coming to Utah

The future of transportation is autonomous. Self-driving vehicles and unmanned air taxis have the potential to create a world in which the computer is literally in the driver's seat. Flying vehicles may sound like a Jetsonian, "pie in the sky" concept, but it's a reality tha...
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_16.jpgA new bill aims to rein in more than 500 state boards and commissions, many which require lawmakers to sit on them

Need a little leisure reading?You might try Rep. John Knotwell's HB387, which is only 3,766 lines long....
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190224_Herbert_CSPAN.jpgHerbert says he's 'cautiously optimistic' the feds will approve Utah's alternative Medicaid expansion plan

Gov. Gary Herbert says he's "cautiously optimistic" that the Trump administration will give Utah the waivers they need in order to implement the scaled-back Medicaid plan passed by lawmakers during the 2019 session....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_26.jpgUtah's budget surplus drops by $200 million. Lawmakers now say a tax cut is possible only if they pass tax reform

With apologies to Alan Greenspan, Utah lawmakers are guilty of succumbing to a spell of "irrational exuberance" as they thought there would be more than a billion dollars of surplus available for them to spend this year. That's not the case....
images/1000px_Mugs/Kristen_Cox_01.jpgGuest opinion: Utah tax reform: Why the sales tax and why now

Utah is widely recognized as one of the best-managed states in the nation, and for good reason. Leaders and residents think ahead and tackle issues before they become a crisis. Tax reform is no different....
images/Resized_Mugshots/Derek_Monson_01.jpegGuest opinion: Help former criminals expunge records and move on with Clean Slate Initiative

Every day, thousands of Utahns are burdened by nonviolent criminal records that torpedo good job prospects, deny them homes, and even prevent them from getting driver's licenses even though they have fully served their time in Utah's criminal justice system and qualify for ...
images/Resized_Logos/Utah_Thrives_Podcast_Logo.jpgUtah Thrives Podcast: Tax modernization

What did Utah's governor mean when he told the Legislature that tax modernization is his top priority for this session?...
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190222_Stewart_Fox.jpgStewart: Pelosi 'isn't serious about border security'

Rep. Chris Stewart had some harsh words for Congressional Democrats and the plan to vote on a resolution to block President Donald Trump's national emergency declaration to build a wall on the border with Mexico....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_21.jpgReport: Utah officials started working to replace voter-approved Medicaid expansion just days after the November election

Politico is out with a big scoop Friday morning that Utah officials started putting pressure on the Trump administration to approve a scaled-back Medicaid expansion plan within days of voters approving Prop. 3....

kued hinckley report


Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Congress set to rebuke Trump on emergency declaration. the Democratic-controlled House is expected to pass a resolution canceling President Donald Trump's national emergency declaration so he can construct a wall on the southern U.S. border. There are already 50 votes in the Senate in favor of the measure, meaning just one more GOP senator needs to support the resolution to send it to Trump's desk to force a veto - https://politi.co/2IBTa3a

Michael Cohen to accuse Trump of criminal behavior. President Trump's former personal lawyer will publicly accuse President Trump of carrying out criminal activity since he's been in office. Cohen will testify before the House Oversight Committee on Wednesday where he will provide "evidence of criminal conduct since Trump became president" according to sources. Cohen will also air allegations of racism, lies and infidelity by Trump during three days of public testimony - http://bit.ly/2IEff14

House investigators probing Trump's contact with Whitaker. The House Judiciary Committee believes it has evidence President Trump asked then-acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker to interfere with an investigation into Trump's business dealings - https://wapo.st/2IBDTQ7

Trump's second summit with North Korea. North Korean leader Kim Jong Un arrived in Vietnam Tuesday morning ahead of his second meeting with President Donald Trump - https://wapo.st/2IFdctL

  • The White House press corps was evicted from the hotel they planned to use as a media center as it's the same hotel where Kim Jong Un is staying - https://nbcnews.to/2IDKcTl

President Trump asks his lawyers to stay on following the release of the Mueller report. The request is an admission that he will likely face continuing federal investigations for years to come - http://bit.ly/2IDO6vd

Ex Trump campaign staffer alleges the president forcibly kissed her. The staffer filed a federal lawsuit on Monday accusing President Trump of kissing her on the mouth prior to a Florida campaign rally in August 2016 - https://politi.co/2IFLE7A

Lindsey Graham gives away the game. In a New York Times Magazine profile, the South Carolina Senator explains why he did a complete 180 on President Trump, going from calling him "unfit for office" to one of his most vocal supporters - he wants to be re-elected. Worth your time - https://nyti.ms/2Iz0UD1

Woah! Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders raised $10 million in less than one week after he announced he was running for the 2020 nomination - https://nyti.ms/2IDAksI

Donald Trump claims his daughter, Ivanka, has "created millions of jobs." No matter how you look at it, that boast simply isn't true - https://cnn.it/2ICP9f2

The average tax refund is down 17%. The lower refunds could give GOP lawmakers headaches as anger over the Trump tax cuts rises - https://politi.co/2IB6F3b

Most economists expect the U.S. to enter a recession by the end of 2021. More than half of business economists surveyed said they see an economic slowdown on the horizon - https://bloom.bg/2IENW6Q

Troubling. Indian fighter jets struck a target inside of Pakistan in apparent retaliation for a suicide bombing earlier this month that killed 40 Indian paramilitary officers inside of Kashmir. It's the most serious escalation of hostilities between the two nuclear-armed countries in two decades - https://wapo.st/2IARnLS

Anti-vaxxers facing a backlash. An outbreak of measles is prompting a reaction against vaccine critics and prompting governments to make it harder for parents to opt out of vaccinating their children - https://wapo.st/2ICbLMH

Trump speaks at a fourth-grade level. A new analysis says the president's speech level is the lowest of the last 15 U.S. presidents going back to Herbert Hoover. Hoover was the highest, speaking at an 11th-grade level - http://bit.ly/2IQToUz

Supreme Court says a judge cannot rule from beyond the grave. In an unsigned opinion, the Supreme Court said: "federal judges are appointed for life, not for eternity." At issue was an opinion issued 11 days after a judge died - http://bit.ly/2INpNLk


1616 - Galileo Galilei is formally banned by the Roman Catholic Church from teaching or defending the view that the earth orbits the sun.

1815 - Napoleon Bonaparte and 1,200 men left his exile on the Isle of Elba to start his 100-day campaign to regain France.

1919 - President Woodrow Wilson signs an act of Congress establishing the Grand Canyon National Park.

1929 - President Calvin Coolidge signs an executive order establishing Grand Teton National Park in Wyoming.

1993 - A truck bomb parked below the North Tower of the World Trade Center explodes, killing six and injuring over a thousand.

2012 - George Zimmerman, a neighborhood watch volunteer, shot and killed 17-year-old Trayvon Martin in Sanford, Fla.

More National Headlines

Wise Words


"Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom." Thomas Jefferson

Lighter Side

Fallen Empire

"They're saying he [Smollett] paid his accomplices with a check! What, did he also write 'fake hate crime' in the memo?"- TREVOR NOAH

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