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Situational awareness - May 19, 2020

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City


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

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

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

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

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

  • Utahns give President Trump poor marks for his handling of the coronavirus pandemic. 
  • President Trump says he's taking hydroxychloroquine to prevent the coronavirus despite little evidence it is effective.
  • A biotech company says they are seeing positive early results from their Covid-19 vaccine.

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Article_Photos/coronavirus_10.jpgUtahns say President Trump is doing a poor job handling coronavirus pandemic
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
President Donald Trump and the Utah State Legislature don't get good marks in their handling of the coronavirus, a new UtahPolicy.com/KUTV 2News poll shows.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_17.jpgLawmakers have opened more than 100 bill files ahead of next January's legislative session
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
It's only been a week since lawmakers could open bill files ahead of next January's special session, but more than 100 pieces of legislation have already been requested since that time.
images/1000px_Mugs/Blake_Moore_01.jpgRepublican Blake Moore launches TV ads in CD1
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Republican congressional candidate Blake Moore is the first out of the gate with television ads ahead of the June 30th primary election.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20200518_GOP_Poll_Small.pngPoll: Cox leads Huntsman by 7 points in GOP primary race
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
With three weeks to go before county clerks start mailing ballots to primary voters, Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox has a seven-point lead over former Gov. Jon Huntsman according to a new UtahPolicy.com/KUTV 2 News survey.
images/1000px_Mugs/Jon_Huntsman_02.jpgAnalysis: Unaffiliated voters registering as Republicans could give Jon Huntsman a big advantage in the GOP primary for governor
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
While former Gov. Jon Huntsman falls behind Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox among Republican Party voters likely to cast a ballot in the June 30 closed party primary, Huntsman leads Cox among political independents who might jump into the party so they can vote for their favorite gubernatorial candidate.
images/1000px_Mugs/Blake_Moore_01.jpgGuest opinion: Why I'm backing Blake Moore in CD1
By Sen. Allen Christensen, R-North Ogden
As a Utah State Senator, I am frequently asked if I am endorsing a candidate for a given political office. That is a serious responsibility, and I have been very selective in whom I support. With that in mind, I am thrilled to give my wholehearted endorsement to a remarkable candidate for Utah's First Congressional District, Blake D. Moore.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_10.jpgRomney condemns Trump's firing of government watchdogs, calling it a 'threat to democracy'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Sen. Mitt Romney rebuked President Donald Trump's firing of government watchdogs, calling it a "threat to accountable democracy."
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgBernick and Schott on politics podcast: 'Desperately in need of a civics lesson'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Managing Editor Bryan Schott and Contributing Editor Bob Bernick bring you their take on the top political news.
images/1000px_Mugs/20200514_Herbert_Presser.jpgUtah will lift more COVID-19 restrictions beginning Saturday
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Gov. Gary Herbert announced Thursday that, beginning Saturday morning, most of the state will move from moderate (orange) to low (yellow) risk from the COVID-19 outbreak.
images/1000px_Mugs/Ben_McAdams_05.jpgMcAdams is a likely 'no' vote on massive coronavirus relief proposal
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
House Democrats unveiled a massive $3 trillion coronavirus relief bill earlier this week. The proposal includes nearly $1 trillion in aid for state and local governments and another round of direct stimulus payments to residents. 
images/1000px_Mugs/Bernick_Mug_01.jpgBob Bernick's notebook: Changing affiliations
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
A lot of independent voters in Utah are wondering if they should formally register as belonging to the Republican Party so they can get a GOP ballot in the June 30 primary election.

sl chamber task force 10


 Deseret News

 Salt Lake Tribune




President Trump said Monday he is taking the drug hydroxychloroquine as protection against the novel coronavirus. There is little evidence that it prevents contracting the illness. Some health experts have warned that the drug could increase the risk of death among some patients with underlying conditions [Washington Post].

Fox News' Neil Cavuto warned viewers after Trump said he was taking hydroxychloroquine that the drug "will kill you" [Mediaite].

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi took a shot at Trump's weight, saying the "morbidly obese" president should not be taking hydroxychloroquine [CNN].

Promising vaccine trial

Biotech company Moderna said they have seen positive early results from their COVID-19 vaccine [CNN].


Researchers are finding evidence that patients who test positive for the coronavirus after recovering are not capable of spreading the infection to others, and could have antibodies that prevent them from getting sick again [Bloomberg].

Trump threatens WHO

President Trump threatened to permanently end funding for the World Health Organization if it did not "commit to substantive improvements within the next 30 days" [New York Times].

Inspector general-gate

President Trump said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo asked him to fire the state department's inspector general [Bloomberg].

A report says the state department inspector general had nearly completed an investigation into Secretary Pompeo's approval of millions of dollars in arms sales to Saudi Arabia [CNBC].

Secretary Pompeo claimed Monday he was not aware the state department's inspector general was investigating allegations he ordered staffers to do personal errands before he asked President Trump to fire him [Washington Post].

Stocks soar

The Dow jumped more than 900 points in its best day since April [CNBC].

European recovery plans

German chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Emmanuel Macron unveiled a $543 billion fund to drive Europe's recovery from the coronavirus [Yahoo!].


31 percent of small and medium-sized businesses have stopped operating in the last three months as well as 52 percent of personal businesses [Morning Brew].

Uber cut 3,000 jobs and shut down 45 offices [Wall Street Journal].

J.C. Penney says it will close 242 stores as part of its bankruptcy [USA Today]. 


Policy News

images/1000px_Logos/Utah_Economic_Response_Task_Force_Logo_01.jpgUtah Economic Task Force town hall: What's new in Utah leads together 3.0?
The Utah Economic Task Force will host a virtual town hall on Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 4:00 p.m. MST to discuss the soon to be released Utah Leads Together 3.0 and EDCUtah's recent business impact survey, as well as provide an update on the retail industry in Utah.
Utah 'AAA' credit rating affirmed, state saves taxpayer dollars on infrastructure during pandemic
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert and Treasurer David Damschen announced that S&P Global, Moody's Investors Service and Fitch Ratings have reaffirmed Utah's AAA credit rating the highest rating a state can receive.
Salt Lake City takes new action on 'Tech Lake City', hiring Clark Cahoon to oversee technology and innovation strategy
Salt Lake City is ripe to develop a pipeline of new tech and life science startup businesses and amplify the culture of tech that already calls the capital city home. And now more than ever, it is time to imagine and build a more sustainable economy to benefit all city residents. Since her first day in office, Mayor Erin Mendenhall and her administration have been working on the 'Tech Lake City' initiative, a plan that calls for attracting more innovation and tech talent to our City. 
images/1000px_Logos/CYBER_24_Logo.jpgCYBER24 episode 82: Tackle IT, security projects while the office is quiet
After a remarkable scramble, generally speaking, by businesses across the country to transition to a remote workforce, smart businesses are looking at what they can accomplish while workers are out of the office.

More National Headlines


1536 - Anne Boleyn, the second wife of England's King Henry VIII, was beheaded after being convicted of adultery.

1588 - The Spanish Armada, assembled to invade England, set sail from Lisbon.

1848 - Mexico ratifies the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, ending the war and ceding California, Nevada, Utah and parts of four other modern-day states to the United States for $15 million.

1962 - Actress Marilyn Monroe performed a sultry rendition of "Happy Birthday" for President John F. Kennedy during a fundraiser at New York's Madison Square Garden.

1992 - The 27th Amendment to the Constitution, which prohibits Congress from giving itself midterm pay raises, went into effect.

Wise Words


"Associate with men of good quality if you esteem your own reputation; for it is better to be alone than in bad company." George Washington

Lighter Side


"This was a scary hearing today. Dr. Bright warned us that the window is closing to address the pandemic. And, you know, unless that window is a drive-through window at KFC, there's no way Trump's even going to bother." - JIMMY KIMMEL

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