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Situational awareness - February 8, 2019

Good morning from Salt Lake City and TGIF!

Friday's news at a glance: Republicans pitch a "fallback" in case the state can't secure Medicaid waivers. National Republicans target McAdams. Congress closes in on a funding deal to avoid a government shutdown.

Friday's political trivia: Thanks to Ron Fox for sending in this stumper, and it is a doozy. What Utah State Senator became the Governor of California? The first three readers to send in a correct answer will be recognized in Monday's newsletter. Email your guesses here.

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 39th day of the year. There are 326 days remaining in 2019.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Today At Utah Policy

images/Resized_Mugshots/Ben_McAdams_20.JPGNational Republicans targeting McAdams in 2020

 He's been in office for just over a month, but Republicans are already aiming to oust Rep. Ben McAdams from his 4th District seat in 2020....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_03.jpgRepublican leaders pitch 'fallback' plan for full Medicaid expansion if they can't get federal waivers

  Republican leaders in the legislature have landed on a "fallback" plan to fully expand Medicaid if their efforts to enact a more limited program falter....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_17.jpgHouse Republicans aiming to pass the limited Medicaid expansion bill by Friday, but changes may delay that timeline

 House Republicans are rolling toward finishing up Medicaid expansion for this session....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_04.jpgPoll: Utahns overwhelmingly oppose lawmakers changing Prop. 4

If the Utah Legislature, controlled by Republicans, and GOP. Gov. Gary Herbert repeal or change Prop 4 the independent redistricting commission approved by voters in November they will be going against, by far, what a majority of Utahns want, a new poll by UtahPolicy....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_22.jpgBill establishes procedures to fill midterm vacancies in Congress

 Sen. Dan McCay, R-Riverton, is taking aim at how Utah fills midterm vacancies in Congress....
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Electric_Scooter_01.jpgBill prohibits using an electric scooter while drunk

 Well, you knew this was coming....
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_16.jpgWeekly survey: Will Utah get waivers for Medicaid expansion?

As part of SB96, which supplants Prop. 3, Utah will need waivers from the Trump administration to expand Medicaid to fewer people than required under the Affordable Care Act while still getting a favorable cost split with the federal government. Do you think they'll be succe...
images/1000px_Logos/USTAR_1000.pngUSTAR-supported technologies look to better address Utah's air quality challenges

Two years ago, Gov. Gary Herbert and the Utah Department of Environmental Quality announced an ambitious goal to reduce annual emissions into Utah's air by 25 percent by 2026 to address Utah's air quality challenges....
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgBuilding Utah: Computer science in every school

 The Utah State Board of Education recently adopted a computer science framework for all K-12 schools in Utah....
images/Resized_Logos/ULCT_Logo1.jpgGuest opinion: Ogden rising to meet new challenges

 It's an interesting view from the shoreline trail in the Wasatch mountains looking down onto the bustling city of Ogden.  ...
images/Resized_Mugshots/Rick_Larsen.jpegGuest opinion: We need to do better than 'tolerance'

 In February 2019, we observe Black History Month with troubling images that are in the rearview mirror but not nearly far enough behind us....

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Seven days until the government shuts down unless Congress can agree to a funding deal.

Congress is closing in on a bipartisan funding deal, with no money for Trump's border wall. President Trump is reportedly warming to the plan which will avoid another government shutdown -  https://politi.co/2MSUqgS

The Supreme Court blocked a restrictive Louisiana abortion law. The law required doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at nearby hospitals and would likely lead to the closure of most abortion clinics in that state - https://nyti.ms/2MTILOV

President Donald Trump ramps up his criticism of Democratic investigations into his administration. Trump complained about "Unlimited Presidential Harassment" on Twitter - https://politi.co/2MSMiNB

President Trump is furious that Democrats are hiring former National Security Council officials to help with investigations. The House Intelligence Committee hired former NSC workers to assist with oversight of the Trump administration - https://cnn.it/2MTSFA4

House Democrats begin their push to obtain Trump's tax returns. House Republicans objected to the move, claiming the Democrats were violating the president's privacy - https://nyti.ms/2MUxMF2

William Barr's nomination as Attorney General advances. His nomination was approved by the Senate Judiciary Committee on a party-line vote - https://abcn.ws/2MVp8WP

Acting Attorney General Matthew Whitaker will testify before Congress Friday. He initially said he would not testify unless Democrats promised not to subpoena him - https://cnn.it/2MTS9C8

Democrats introduce their "Green New Deal" plan. The liberal wing of the party unveiled a sweeping strategy for combating climate change - https://nyti.ms/2MVq79t

Polls! Polls! Polls!

  • 87% of Americans say special counsel Robert Mueller's report on his investigation should be made public - https://cnn.it/2MTJC25
  • President Trump's approval ratings drop again. 55% of Americans disapprove of the president's job performance - http://bit.ly/2MWLwiv

Amazon.com CEO Jeff Bezos says the National Enquirer tried to extort him. Bezos says the tabloid threatened to publish graphic personal photos unless he stopped investigating how the publication obtained private messages between him and his mistress - https://wapo.st/2SAuSdW

Saudi Prince told aide he would use "a bullet" on Jamal Khashoggi. Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman made the threat more than a year before Khashoggi was murdered by a team of Saudi operatives inside the Saudi consulate in Istanbul - https://nyti.ms/2MSTCsm

John Dingell, the longest-serving member of Congress, dies. The Michigan Democrat was 92. He served 29 terms in the House - https://wapo.st/2SCo0fY

A Florida politician has resigned after sexually assaulting a man by licking his face. Nancy Oakley also reportedly groped the man's crotch area - http://bit.ly/2MZOvXG


1587 - Mary, Queen of Scots, is executed on suspicion of having been involved in the plot to murder her cousin, Queen Elizabeth I.

1692 - A doctor in Massachusetts Bay Colony said two village girls were possibly bewitched, a charge that set off the Salem witch trials.

1837 - Richard Johnson becomes the first Vice President of the U.S. chosen by the Senate.

1910 - The Boy Scouts of America is incorporated by Willam D. Boyce.

1922 - President Warren G. Harding introduces the first radio set in the White House.

1924 - The first execution by gas chamber takes place in Nevada.

Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Weekend EventOutdoors Report--Salt Lake Tribune:Utah's skiers and snowboarders took advantage of the snow dumped by a series of big storms --Salt Lake Tribune: In a first, Utah eco-group sues feds over San Juan energy leases that threaten the 'last great frontier for America...
images/Resized_Logos/CYBER24_season_2_logo.jpgCYBER24 Episode 44: CISA's first emergency directive
In late January, the director of the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) issued agency's first Emergency Directive, outlining current and potential risks posed to Federal agencies....
Governor Herbert, UCAIR executive director report air quality milestones at annual Show UCAIR Summit
At its fourth annual Show UCAIR (Utah Clean Air Partnership) Summit, Gov. Gary Herbert and UCAIR Executive Director Thom Carter addressed our progress toward improving Utah's air quality....
images/1000px_Logos/WTC_Utah_Logo.pngJoin WTC Utah for a Diplomatic Luncheon with the Ambassador of Austria to the United Nations
 World Trade Center Utah, in partnership with the Governor's Office of Economic Development, is delighted to host a diplomatic luncheon welcoming His Excellency Dr. Jan Kickert, Ambassador of Austria to the United Nations....

More National Headlines

Wise Words


"Tell me and I forget. Teach me and I remember. Involve me and I learn." Benjamin Franklin

Lighter Side


"A man in Japan recently claimed to have dated a cockroach for over a year that he named Lisa. The man said Lisa really hit it off with his friends and family, especially his ant." - SETH MEYERS

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