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Situational awareness - April 28, 2020

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City


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

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

267 days to inauguration day (01/20/2021)

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

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

  • Intelligence agencies repeatedly warned President Trump about the threat from the coronavirus in January and February.
  • Republican Jan Garbett may yet qualify for the June primary for governor after a federal judge lowered the signature threshold for her.
  • Utahns don't yet support a change to the state constitution that would change how education is funded.


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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_41.jpgPoll: Voters are not yet sold on constitutional amendment to change school funding
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Utah voters support changing the state Constitution to allow income tax revenues to be spent on programs for the disabled and children, in addition to higher and public education, which are already earmarked in the basic state law.
images/1000px_Mugs/Jan_Garbett_01.jpgFederal judge lowers signature threshold for Republican Jan Garbett to qualify for the ballot
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
The already crowded Republican gubernatorial primary in June could add one more candidate as Republican Jan Garbett's was thrown a legal lifeline on Monday.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20200427_GOED.jpgProcurement technical assistance centers play vital role against COVID-19
By Governor's Office of Economic Development
This article is part of a series about Utah-based companies going above and beyond the call of duty to help combat the coronavirus pandemic.
images/Logos/Envision_Utah_Logo.pngGubernatorial candidates join Envision Utah for first post-convention forum
By News Release
Utah's gubernatorial candidates will have a chance to talk issues in a free live stream forum hosted by local nonprofit Envision Utah this Wednesday at 11:30 a.m. Interested attendees can RSVP here.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/2020_Election_03.jpg2020 Utah candidate tracker - Statewide and congressional races
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Now that the conventions are over, see who is headed to a primary election in the statewide races and Congressional contests.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/2020_Election_02.jpg2020 Utah candidate tracker - Utah Senate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Half of the Utah Senate seats are up for election this year. Here's who is through to November and who is facing a primary
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. Check out who is facing a primary election and who is moving on to November.
images/Icons-Black/republican2.pngAnalysis: Will Utah Republicans follow their rules and kick Huntsman and Wright out of the party for gathering signatures?
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
When the sun came up Sunday morning, former GOP Gov. Jon Huntsman and former Utah Republican Party Chairman Thomas Wright found themselves in an interesting position: According to state GOP bylaws, they were no longer Republicans.
images/Icons-Blue/utah1.pngRepublicans will have a four-way primary for governor in June as Greg Hughes joins Cox, Huntsman and Wright on the ballot
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Former Gov. Jon Huntsman is thanking his lucky stars that he was able to secure enough signatures to get on the primary ballot as Utah GOP delegates roundly rejected his bid to return to the governor's mansion Saturday night.
images/1000px_Mugs/20200425_LaVarr_Hair_01.jpgThese are desperate times for my hair
By LaVarr Webb, Publisher
The thing is, I already needed a haircut when the world shut down. Now, several weeks later, I REALLY needed a haircut.
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgBernick and Schott on politics podcast - 'Glenn Beck's brain on Ritalin'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick discuss the avalanche of recent Utah political news.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Coronavirus_09.jpgLawmakers allocate more than $4 billion in coronavirus relief funds during special session
By Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick
Utah lawmakers allocated billions of dollars in federal COVID-19 relief funds during Thursday afternoon's special session, most of it going toward the state's unemployment insurance fund. But, they're preparing for the economic pain that's sure to come.

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Intelligence agencies warned President Donald Trump about the spread of the coronavirus more than a dozen times in January and February. The reports laid out the threat of severe economic and social disruptions from the outbreak, but the warnings did not register with Trump [Washington Post].

Reopening the country

Several governors are moving ahead with plans to reopen their states this week [New York Times].

Attorney General William Barr told federal prosecutors to be on guard for overbearing state and local coronavirus responses [CNN].

Small business lifeline

The website for the Paycheck Protection Program crashed on Monday moments after it re-opened for a new round of lending to small businesses [NPR].

The NBA's Los Angeles Lakers got a $4.6 million loan from the program designed to help small businesses affected by the coronavirus. The team returned the money [CNBC].

More testing needed

The Trump administration vowed to increase testing for COVID-19 as they brace for possible outbreaks this summer and autumn [Politico].

Top Chinese scientists say the coronavirus is likely to keep coming back each year [Bloomberg].

Economic impact

The CEO of Boeing says it could take two to three years for air travel to fully recover from the virus [CNBC].

New symptoms

New symptoms of the coronavirus according to the CDC include muscle pain, sore throat and headache [New York Times].

Open the schools?

President Donald Trump said Monday that states should "seriously consider" reopening their schools before the end of the academic year [Bloomberg].

Vaccine progress?

Scientists at Oxford University are racing ahead with trials on a potential vaccine for the coronavirus that could be ready for emergency approval by the fall [New York Times].

Is the death toll higher?

The number of deaths in the U.S. jumped dramatically during the first weeks of the coronavirus pandemic, leading experts to suggest the number of deaths from the virus is much higher than originally thought [Washington Post].


New York canceled the state's Democratic presidential primary set for June 23 because of the coronavirus [New York Times].

2021 still not a sure thing

The president of the Tokyo Olympics is floating the possibility of the delayed games being permanently canceled because of the coronavirus [South China Morning Post].


South Korean officials say the reason North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has stayed away from the public eye is because he's in hiding to avoid the coronavirus [Reuters].


Policy News

images/1000px_Logos/Utah_Economic_Response_Task_Force_Logo_01.jpgUtah Economic Task Force town hall: Reactivating your business: Testing and taxes
The Utah Economic Task Force will host a virtual town hall on Tuesday, April 28, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. MST to discuss reactivating businesses and the Utah economy with a focus on testing and taxes.
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgSalt Lake Chamber launches new webinar series to support businesses through COVID-19 pandemic
The Salt Lake Chamber has announced a new informational webinar series - "Utah Leads Together" - to support our community's economic reactivation and to help implement the Utah Leads Together plan for business. 
images/1000px_Logos/Congressional_News_01.jpgRomney urges independent review of WHO's COVID-19 response
U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT), member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, joined his colleagues in sending a letter to United Nations (UN) Secretary General Antnio Guterres requesting that the UN convene an independent panel of experts to conduct a review of the World Health Organization's (WHO) response to the COVID-19 global pandemic.

More National Headlines


1788 - Maryland became the seventh state to ratify the U.S. Constitution.

1789 - The crew of the British ship Bounty mutinied, setting Captain William Bligh and 18 sailors adrift in a launch in the South Pacific.

1945 - Italian dictator Benito Mussolini and his mistress, Clara Petacci, were executed.

1967 - Heavyweight boxing champion Muhammad Ali refused to be inducted into the Army.

1996 - President Bill Clinton gave 4 1/2 hours of videotaped testimony as a defense witness in the criminal trial of his former Whitewater business partners.

2004 - CBS News released evidence of the Abu Ghraib torture and prisoner abuse. The photographs show rape and abuse from American troops over Iraqi detainees.

Wise Words


"Hope is important because it can make the present moment less difficult to bear. If we believe that tomorrow will be better, we can bear a hardship today."Thich Nhat Hanh

Lighter Side

Toe the Line

"That's right, Trump fired a guy named 'Dr. Bright.' He also let go of Professor Smarty, Dr. Savior and Secretary 'I Have the Cure, Don't Fire Me.'"- STEPHEN COLBERT

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