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Situational awareness - March 27, 2018

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. Welcome to Utah's must-read daily political news roundup. 

Utahns don't think the Trump campaign colluded with Russia in 2016. None of the ballot initiatives have enough signatures to qualify for the ballot yet, but a few are getting close. President Trump's approval rating is the highest in nearly a year. 

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Here's what's driving the day

Utahns say "No collusion"

A new UtahPolicy.com survey finds a slim majority of Utahns say there was no collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia during the 2016 election [Utah Policy].

Which initiatives will make the 2018 ballot

According to records obtained through a GRAMA request, we now know how many signatures the various ballot initiatives have in their quest to qualify for the ballot. The medical cannabis petition is the closest to qualifying right now. However, the Keep My Voice initiative has not submitted a single signature so far [Utah Policy].

Are gun opponents going too far?

Jared Whitley argues that gun control advocates keep shooting themselves in the foot with their rhetoric [Utah Policy].

Political bracket challenge

We had another big upset as House Majority Leader Brad Wilson knocked off Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox on Monday. Here are the rest of the results [Utah Policy].

We've got four more matchups in our round of 16 for you today [Utah Policy].

Other Utah headlines

National headlines

On this day in history

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Today At Utah Policy

Slim majority of Utahns say they don't believe the Trump campaign colluded with Russia

A little more than half of Utahns say they don't think Donald Trump's presidential campaign colluded with Russian agents during the election. However, the issue breaks sharply along partisan lines....

2018 Utah political bracket challenge: More 'Sweet 16' matchups

We've got the last of our round of 16 matchups on tap today....

Medical marijuana ballot close to qualifying for November's ballot; Keep My Voice has not submitted any signatures yet

The citizen initiative to legalize medical marijuana in Utah is close to getting enough signatures to secure a spot on November's ballot. But, the group seeking to repeal the signature-gathering route for candidates has not yet submitted a single signature to Utah election o...

2018 political bracket challenge: Cox upset in the 'Sweet 16'

Another stunning upset today in our 2018 bracket challenge as the first four competitors make it to the round of 8....

How gun control advocates keep (pardon the pun) shooting themselves in the foot

We were working on an anti-sex offender bill, many years ago when I was a Senate staffer. One of the demands we heard for our "get tough" legislation was that there should be mandatory minimums for child sex offenders. If someone harmed a child, they should spend at least 20...

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Policy News

Utah's federal delegation is recognized for pro-business votes
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce named all six members of Utah's congressional delegation as Spirit of Enterprise Award winners for their support of pro-growth, pro-jobs policies during the first session of the 115th Congress....

Fox files 'The guild is coming to town'
Odds are, if we have a conversation in the next year, you'll hear from me in person about how excited I am to host the next Site Selectors Guild Conference....

Salt Lake City starts consumer financial protection initiative
Salt Lake City is launching a Consumer Financial Protection Initiative to strengthen consumer rights and protect residents from predatory financial practices....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: The Legislature was right to allow recorded conversations

4 percent tuition hikes expected for University of Utah, Utah State

Oil and gas company is shirking its royalty obligations to Utah's school fund, state regulators claim

Gehrke: A secret recording launched a sex-assault scandal. The LDS Church received it the same month it tried to ban secret recordings in Utah.

Utah's jail standards show importance of day-to-day policies as lawsuits target largest jails for deadly breakdowns in inmate medical care

Floating trash on the Jordan River threatens entire species of waterfowl, but a new project aims to fix that

Ambassador Huntsman says it's time for Russia to be a 'more responsible partner'

Utah's Rep. Stewart offers solutions to stop Russian meddling in the upcoming midterm elections

Rep. Mia Love again says she's open to action on guns

Deseret News

Editorial: Spending bill is fiscally irresponsible

1.5 percent base tuition increase proposed for state colleges, universities

Jordan River trash boom targets floating garbage, protects Great Salt Lake wetlands

Too early to judge Trump on national security, foreign relations, congressmen say


Utah County moves away from vote-by-mail - contrary to some city officials' wishes (Daily Herald)

At Q&A in Provo, Mitt Romney says he's more conservative than Trump on immigration (Daily Herald)

National Headlines

Trump's approval rating is *this* close to Obama's and Reagan's (CNN)

Did Facebook's 'favors' for the Obama campaign constitute a violation of federal law? (FOX News)

The Paris Climate Accords Are Looking More and More Like Fantasy (New York Magazine)

Rapper Who Performed at 'March for Our Lives' Previously Pled Guilty to Gun Crime (Free Beacon)

US, allies band together to expel Russians over spy case (Associated Press)

Do voters care about Trump's sexual history? Ask Bill Clinton (The Hill)

FLASHBACK: MSM Deemed Clinton-Lewinsky Affair Nothing More Than Consensual Sex (CNN)

McConnell wants hemp removed from controlled substance list (Washington Post)

Cynthia Nixon calls Cuomo 'Andrew the Bully,' compares him to Trump (CNN)

Facebook's FTC probe rocked the stock. But will anything rein in Facebook? (USA Today)

Stocks Rebound as Trade Tensions With China Ease (Wall Street Journal)

Wise Words


"It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society." Jiddu Krishnamurti

Lighter Side


"In addition to President Trump, it turns out Kim Jong Un also called Putin to congratulate him on his election victory. Putin said afterward, "Wow, I'm hearing from all the crazies." Conan O'Brien

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