utah policy logo

The UtahPolicy.com daily newsletter gets you up to speed on the top local and national news about politics and public policy. Send news tips or feedback to bschott@utahpolicy.com, or message us on Twitter.

zions bank sponsorship ad

Situational awareness - March 20, 2020

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City


36 days to the Utah Republican and Democratic state conventions (4/25/2020)

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

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

306 days to inauguration day [01/20/2021)

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

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

  • John Swallow, who was forced to resign amid scandal, wants to be Utah AG again.
  • Spencer Cox taps Deidre Henderson as his running mate.
  • California Gov. Gavin Newsome orders that state's residents to stay at home to stop the spread of coronavirus.


Today's question comes from David Muir.

Which non-Latter Day Saint who graduated from Brigham Young University served in the United State's legislative (both House and Senate) and judiciary branches of government, and whose name is still prominently known in 'today's political institutions in Utah?

Send your guesses to us via email at mailbag@utahpolicy.com

We'll pick a winner at random from the correct answers who will get to ask next week's question.

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

If you know of friends or colleagues who would benefit from our daily news roundup, please encourage them to sign up for our emails.

sl chamber campaign strategies

Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Mugs/Bernick_Mug_01.jpgBob Bernick's notebook: Picking a running mate is a crucial choice
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Three of the Republican gubernatorial candidates this year are going with a tried-and-true method in picking their lieutenant governor running mates: Get someone who has already won an election in Utah, and is likely on your political right.
images/1000px_Mugs/John_Swallow_03.jpgJohn Swallow, who resigned in the wake of multiple scandals, is running for Utah Attorney General again
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Former Utah Attorney General John Swallow, who resigned due to a wave of scandals, is seeking a return to that office.
images/1000px_Mugs/Cox_Henderson_01.jpgCox taps Henderson as his running mate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Just one day after she withdrew from her re-election bid for the Utah Senate, Deidre Henderson joined Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox as his running mate. 
images/1000px_Mugs/Peter_Reichard_01.pngGuest opinion: Coronavirus, an earthquake and lessons learned from a past crisis
By Peter Reichart
The impacts surrounding the coronavirus, coupled with a significant earthquake, have me thinking back to a dark period. In New Orleans in 2005, I watched a piece of American civilization fall into confusion, the city half-destroyed (and my own house looted). But I was lucky, with "only" about $40,000 in damage from floodwaters.
images/1000px_Screenshots/20200319_McAdams_Today.jpgVideo: McAdams says America needs to increase availability of coronavirus testing
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Rep. Ben McAdams is the second member of Congress to test positive for the COVID-19 virus. He said Thursday morning testing should be expanded to cover more Americans.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/2020_Election_03.jpg2020 Utah candidate tracker - Statewide and congressional races
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Keep up to date with the latest candidate filings in the race for governor and Utah's four seats in Congress.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/2020_Election_02.jpg2020 Utah candidate tracker - Utah Senate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
2020 means another election cycle is upon us. Half of the Utah Senate seats are up for election this year. Here's a running list of declared candidates.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/2020_Election_01.jpg2020 Utah candidate tracker - Utah House
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
All 75 Utah House seats are up for election this year. Here's our running list of who has declared to run so far this year.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Coronavirus_01.jpgSome rural lawmakers say the state is overreacting to the coronavirus outbreak
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
18 rural Utah lawmakers sent a letter to Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox that essentially accused them of overreacting to the threat posed by the COVID-19 outbreak and warning of irreparable harm to the state's economy.
images/1000px_Mugs/Joe_Jarvis_01.jpgJoe Jarvis dropping bid for Congress to be Jan Garbett's running mate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Republican Jan Garbett will name physician Joe Jarvis as her running mate UtahPolicy.com has learned.
images/1000px_Mugs/Ben_McAdams_02.jpgMcAdams tests positive for coronavirus
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Rep. Ben McAdams is the second member of Congress to test positive for the COVID-19 virus.
images/Resized_Mugshots/Deidre_Henderson.jpegSen. Deidre Henderson won't run for re-election
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
In a surprise move, state Sen. Deidre Henderson, R-Spanish Fork, announced Wednesday morning that she won't run for re-election this year, retiring from the Senate after eight years, just two terms.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Captiol_28.jpgAnalysis: The most 'conservative' and 'liberal' members of the Utah Senate
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
While a few Utah House Republicans and Democrats are somewhat close to each other in their political leanings, you don't find that in the state Senate -- in that smaller, more elite body, members of the two major political parties are very, very far apart philosophically.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_36.jpgShould Utah make changes to how education is funded? We asked the GOP candidates for governor
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
UtahPolicy.com asked the now-seven major GOP candidates for governor about the plan to amend the Utah Constitution to allow income tax revenue to go to more than just higher and public education.

World Trade Center Utah ad


Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Stay at home

California Gov. Gavin Newsome ordered that state's 40 million residents to stay at home to slow the spread of the coronavirus [Politico].

Coronavirus numbers skyrocketing

The global death toll from the virus topped 10,000. The number of deaths from Italy topped the death toll from China. More than 14,000 people in the U.S. have tested positive. [Yahoo News].

Republicans unveil their stimulus bill

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell took the wraps off a massive fiscal stimulus bill to fight the coronavirus on Thursday. The plan includes direct cash payments of up to $1,200 per person and $2,400 per married couple. The White House is hoping the measure is passed in the next few days [Washington Post].

Senate Democrats want to cancel student loan payments during the coronavirus outbreak [The Hill].

Here come the job losses

Unemployment claims jumped by 30 percent last week due to cutbacks over the coronavirus outbreak [New York Times].

Whiskey. Tango. Foxtrot.

A secret recording revealed Republican Sen. Richard Burr, the chairman of the Senate Intelligence Committee, warned a small group of well-connected constituents three weeks ago to prepare for dire consequences from the coronavirus. The remarks were much more pessimistic than anything he said publicly during that time [NPR].

Burr dumped up to $1.7 million worth of stock around the same time he was receiving daily briefings about the threat from the coronavirus [Pro Publica].

Georgia Republican Sen. Kelly Loeffler got rid of seven figures' worth of stock holdings in the days following a private, all-senators briefing on the coronavirus [Daily Beast].

California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Oklahoma Republican Sen. James Inhofe also sold off stocks worth millions of dollars in the days before the market crash [Fox News].

Fox News' Tucker Carlson called on Sen. Burr to resign following the news of his stock sell-off [YouTube].

Doctors scrambling to keep up with coronavirus

Doctors and medical workers are pleading on social media for medical protective gear due to a severe shortage [New York Times].

A shortage of ventilators has governments and manufacturers adopting drastic measures to produce more of the devices, which are a crucial tool to help patients stay alive [CNN].

"We're not a shipping clerk." President Donald Trump tells the nation's governors to step up their efforts to get medical supplies and not rely on the feds [Politico].

Bad timing

The USDA is still fighting to kick hundreds of thousands of Americans off the food stamp program despite the coronavirus pandemic [PBS Newshour].

A ray of hope?

President Trump told the Food and Drug Administration to see if it can expand the use of an anti-malarial drug as a treatment for coronavirus patients. The drug, chloroquine, has not been approved for the treatment of COVID-19 [Bloomberg].

Chinese doctors pulled back on the use of chloroquine because it's incredibly lethal in higher doses [Bloomberg].

Travel restrictions

The State Department is warning Americans not to travel abroad and Americans outside the country should return home or prepare to shelter in place [NBC News].


Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Most indoor events are cancelled or postponed right now, but it's still a great time to get outdoors and enjoy some hiking. We'll continue to provide links to local stories highlighting outdoor activities, and a different hike every week.Outdoors Report-- Hike of the Week: Johnson Canyon Trail in Snow Canyon State Park-- Salt Lake Tribune: With coronavirus travel limits, Utah's national parks may be your best -and safest - bet for a getaway-- Salt Lake Tribune:Zion Canyon gets clogged with cars as park idles shuttles; Moab says stay away-- KSL.com: Want a healthy method of social distancing? Get out into the great outdoors-- KSL.com: BLM, National Park Service temporarily waive entrance fees-- KSL.com: No red rock respite from COVID-19 as new health order for Moab puts tourism in limbo
NHMU helps students impacted by school closures with Research Quest Live, an interactive version of the award-winning online platform
The Natural History Museum of Utah is now offering an interactive version of its award-winning free online education program, Research Quest, to students throughout Utah and the country. Research Quest Live allows for students to have live sessions with professional educators from the Natural History Museum of Utah while schools are closed.
images/1000px_Logos/WTC_Utah_Logo.pngWTC Utah webinar series: Force majeure with Parsons Behle & Latimer
Join World Trade Center Utah, in partnership with Parsons Behle & Latimer, for a webinar about whether the COVID-19 pandemic and economic shock may excuse a party's performance under a contract.
Central Wasatch Commission opens a call for project ideas and will accept idea submissions now through April 3rd
The Central Wasatch Commission is pleased to announce the launch of a Call for Ideas for new projects specific to the project area of the Central Wasatch Commission, which includes Millcreek Canyon, Big and Little Cottonwood Canyons, and the Wasatch Back.

More National Headlines


1760 - The Great Boston Fire of 1760 destroys 349 buildings.

1852 - Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin is published.

1854 - The Republican Party is organized in Ripon, Wisconsin.

1915 - Albert Einstein published his general theory of relativity.

1933 - Giuseppe Zangara is executed in Florida for fatally shooting Anton Cermak in an assassination attempt against President-Elect Franklin D. Roosevelt.

1985 - Libby Riddles becomes the first woman to win the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race.

2003 - In the early hours of the morning, the United States and three other countries begin military operations in Iraq.

Wise Words


"Goodness is the only investment that never fails."Henry David Thoreau

Lighter Side

Picking Your Guy

"Biden did well with voters over 45, and Bernie did well with voters under 45. Basically, if you're a Democrat who's had a colonoscopy, Joe is your guy."- JIMMY KIMMEL

facebook link twitter link youtube link linked in logo

Listen to us on_Apple Podcasts

Listen on Stitcher

Listen on Google Play Music

Subscribers may receive special messages with information about new features, special offers, or public policy messages from clients and advertisers.

Advertise With Us