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Situational awareness - March 27, 2020

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City


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

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

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

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

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

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

  • The House is rushing to pass the $2 trillion stimulus package.
  • Jon Huntsman's effort to gather signatures to get on the ballot is in big trouble.
  • Unemployment claims explode


This week's question comes from Chase Thomas.

Mormonism isn't the only religion with Utah roots. What religion based on an alien visit and beliefs involving mummification was also started in Utah?

Send your answers to mailbag@UtahPolicy.com. The winner, selected at random from the correct answers, will get to answer next week's question.

Good luck. 

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Mugs/Jon_Huntsman_03.jpgMore than half of the signatures Jon Huntsman's campaign submitted to get on the ballot were thrown out
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Jon Huntsman's bid to make the Republican primary ballot through signature-gathering is in deep trouble, and the ongoing coronavirus pandemic isn't making his efforts any easier. 
images/Shutterstock_Logos/GOP_Elephant_01.jpgUtah GOP online meeting overrun with pornography and racist content
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Thursday night Republican gubernatorial candidate Aimee Winder Newton was holding an online chat with delegates when the meeting was hijacked and overrun with pornographic images and racist content.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_24.jpgGov. Herbert suspends sections of Utah statute regarding signature gathering
By News Release
In order to better accommodate social distancing measures that help prevent the spread of COVID-19, Gov. Gary R. Herbert has issued an Executive Order suspending certain sections of state statute regarding requirements on signature gathering.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/House_District_7.jpgTwo former legislators facing off in House District 7 race
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Editor's Note: Over the next several weeks UtahPolicy.com will analyze several legislative races this year, the candidates and their political histories.In Ogden's House District 7 race this year it will be one old House member against an even older House member.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_12.jpgRomney calls massive $2 trillion stimulus package 'very good news'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Sen. Mitt Romney said Wednesday that the gargantuan $2 trillion stimulus package being considered by Congress is "very good news" as Washington races to confront the economic damage from the coronavirus pandemic.
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_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_16.jpgAnalysis: Pro-tax reform vote did not hurt many lawmakers politically
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
When the anti-tax reform public movement was gaining strength in early January, there was all kinds of talk about how in key legislative contests, leading lawmakers who pushed reform in the December special session could be voted out this year.

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Salt Lake Tribune



Stimulus package

Lawmakers are racing back to Washington to vote on the $2 trillion stimulus package in case a lawmaker on either side of the aisle tries to delay the vote [NBC News].

The mammoth stimulus package may only temporarily stop the economic damage from the virus [Politico].

When can you expect to receive a stimulus check from the government? [Bloomberg].

Cruise line companies are cut out of the stimulus package because they are not based in the U.S. [Washington Post].

The U.S. may take a stake in airlines that get bailouts from the federal government [Wall Street Journal].

Jobless claims explode

3.28 million people filed for unemployment insurance last week. Claims increased in all 50 states [Bloomberg].

U.S. surpasses China

The United States now has the most coronavirus infections in the world, surpassing China and Italy [AP].

China is preparing to seal its borders to most foreigners to prevent another outbreak [Bloomberg].

Back to normal?

President Donald Trump is pushing to open parts of the country, but several governors are warning more must be done to combat the spread of the virus [Washington Post].

President Trump's advisors are urging him to drop his Easter deadline for re-opening the economy [Axios].

Lockdowns from the virus could lift slowly instead of all at once [AP].

Trump casts doubt on ventilator need

During a televised interview, President Donald Trump said he doesn't believe New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo's claim that his state needs 30,000 ventilators to respond to the crisis [Politico].

The Trump administration has reportedly pulled back from a deal to build ventilators because it's too expensive [New York Times].

"We need a Tom Brady"

Washington Gov. Jay Inslee slammed President Trump during a conference call, urging him to take more drastic action to help states secure medical supplies. Trump told the governors on the call his administration was ready to be the "backup" for the states, but Inslee reportedly said "We don't need a backup. We need a Tom Brady" [Washington Post].

Johnson tests positive

British P.M. Boris Johnson has tested positive for coronavirus [Fox News].


Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Outdoors Report--Salt Lake Tribune:'I feel like hiking is a safe option' - Utah's hills are alive with hikers, most keeping their distance, in age of coronavirus--Salt Lake Tribune:Health officials ask National Park Service to close Arches and Canyonlands-- Deseret News:How is social distancing affecting Utah's national parks?-- Deseret News:Appeals grow to close U.S. national parks during pandemic-- KSL.com:Utah national parks still open, but assessing coronavirus risks regularlyVirtual EventsWorldwide Museums --Met 360 Project --Virtual Museum Tours --Museum Zen Art --Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery --Tate Britain Museum --Musee D'Orsay Museum --Uffizi Gallery --Van Gogh Museum --Louvre Egyptian Antiquities Virtual Tour --Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History --The British Museum --The White House --Palace of Versailles --Doge's Palace --Anne Frank House --The Leonardo At HomeArt/Galleries--Kimball Art Center Lesson Plans and ARTS Tours--Salt Lake Gallery StrollBotanical/Zoological--Hogle Zoo --Loveland Living Planet Aquarium --Tracy Aviary
Utah State Tax Commission postpones 2019 tax filing deadline
Utah State Tax Commissioners approved adjustments to tax filing and payment deadlines for individuals and business entities during its Commission meeting. The adjustments are in response to the actions taken by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in response to COVID-19, Novel coronavirus.
Leaders for Clean Air receives $25,000 UCAIR grant to help Utah workplaces install EV chargers
Leaders for Clean Air (LFCA), a Salt Lake City non-profit, working in partnership with Rocky Mountain Power, with a mission to improve air quality by encouraging electric vehicle adoption along the Wasatch Front, announced the award of a $25,000 grant from UCAIR.
Utah Economic Response Task Force announces data analytics and decision support advisory team
Following Governor Herbert's release yesterday of the Utah Economic Response Task Force Plan, "Utah Leads Together," the Task Force announced the formation of a cross-disciplinary team of data analytics and subject-matter experts to advise decision-makers in achieving the Plan's goals. 
Attorney General Reyes warns Amazon, Facebook, eBay, Craigslist, Walmart: Online marketplaces are not exempt from price gouging laws
Attorney General Sean D. Reyes urged Amazon, Facebook, eBay, Walmart, and Craigslist to more rigorously monitor price gouging practices by online sellers using their services.
Governor issues Executive Order relaxing requirements for telehealth providers
The governor issued an Executive Order suspending sections of state statute that may make it difficult for health providers to provide telehealth care to their patients. 

More National Headlines


1794 - The U.S. government establishes a permanent navy and authorizes the building of six frigates

1866 - President Andrew Johnson vetoes the Civil Rights Act of 1866. His veto is overridden by Congress.

1886 - Geronimo, Apache warrior, surrenders to the U.S. Army, ending the main phase of the Apache Wars.

1915 - Typhoid Mary, the first healthy carrier of disease ever identified in the U.S., is put into quarantine, where she would remain for the rest of her life.

1964 - The strongest recorded earthquake to hit North America -- magnitude 9.2 -- struck Alaska, killing 139 people.

Wise Words


"Life imitates art far more than art imitates Life."Oscar Wilde

Lighter Side

Tom Hanks

"Yes, ladies and gentlemen, corona got to Tom Hanks. And this man's already been through so much. I mean, think about it. After the war he's been through and that time his plane crashed, and he already had to deal with his dog dying. I feel bad for him. I mean, at the same time, he shouldn't have been letting everyone touch his chocolates. That's probably how he got it."- TREVOR NOAH

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