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Situational awareness - May 22, 2019

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City.

Welcome to Utah's must-read daily political news rundown. Please encourage your friends and colleagues to sign up for our emails.

Here's what is driving the day:

  • Tax reform will require "big, bold ideas."
  • IRS must turn tax returns over to Congress.
  • Democratic calls for impeachment grow louder.

Conversation BubbleNews tips/story ideas

Kindly send suggestions, concerns and news tips to us via email at bschott@utahpolicy.com

The UtahPolicy.com daily newsletter gets you up to speed on the top local and national news about politics and public policy. Our news is curated by Managing Editor Bryan Schott, along with help from Golden Webb. ((Click here to subscribe))

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Today is the 142nd day of the year. There are 223 days remaining in 2019.

12 days until the municipal election filing period opens (6/3/2019)

16 days until the municipal election filing period ends (6/7/2019)

17 days until the Independent American Party Utah State Convention (6/8/2019)

31 days to the Utah State Democratic Party Organizing Convention (6/22/2019)

35 days to the first Democratic presidential primary debates in Miami (6/26/2019)

69 days to the second Democratic presidential primary debates in Detroit (7/30/2019)

83 days to the 2019 Utah primary elections (8/13/2019)

167 days to the 2019 municipal elections (11/5/2019)

250 days to the first day of the 2020 Utah Legislature (1/27/2020)

258 days to the 2020 Iowa Caucuses (2/3/2020)

286 days to the 2020 Utah presidential primary (3/3/2020)

527 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgMore Republicans than you can shake a stick at - Bernick and Schott on politics

A whole slew of Republicans are lining up to possibly challenge freshman Democrat Ben McAdams in 2020. We run down the list of contenders.
images/Shutterstock_article_photos/Congressional_News_02.jpgRomney, Lee, Braun, Toomey introduce legislation to require Congress to budget for natural disasters

U.S. Senators Mitt Romney (R-UT), Mike Lee (R-UT), Mike Braun (R-IN), and Pat Toomey (R-PA) today introduced the Budgeting for Disasters Act, legislation that would require future disaster funding to fall within statutory budget limits. A summary of the legislation is available here.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20190521_GOED.jpgUtah Governor's Office of Economic Development offers programs to stimulate economic activity in rural Utah

The Governor's Office of Economic Development (GOED), through its Office of Rural Development (ORD), provides incentives, grants and resources to rural businesses. The office works with local governments, organizations and companies in Utah's rural counties to provide programs that sustain businesses and improve employment opportunities.
images/Resized_Mugshots/Spencer_Cox_01.jpgQ&A with Spencer Cox

Spencer Cox threw his hat in the ring for the 2020 Utah gubernatorial race last week. If he wins, Cox would become the first Utah Lt. Governor to win an election to the governor's office.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_12.jpgSpeaker Brad Wilson announces upcoming staff changes

Speaker Brad Wilson has announced that Greg Hartley, current Chief of Staff to the Utah House of Representatives, will conclude his service with the House later this year to pursue other opportunities. 
images/Resized_Mugshots/Ben_McAdams_20.JPGNearly a dozen Republicans are being linked to a possible run against Democrat Ben McAdams in 2020

Defeating Rep. Ben McAdams is one of the top priorities for national Republicans in 2020.
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190519_Romney_CNN_02.jpgWatch: Romney says he's not ready to endorse Trump's re-election

Sen. Mitt Romney, one of the most vocal Republican critics of President Donald Trump, said Sunday he's not ready to endorse Trump for re-election.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Job_Growth_01.jpgUtah's unemployment rate drops to lowest level in more than a decade

Utah's nonfarm payroll employment for April 2019 grew by an estimated 3.2 percent, adding 48,600 jobs to the economy since April 2018. Utah's current employment level registers 1,555,400. March's year-over job growth rate of 3.0 percent was revised up to 3.1 percent. 

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IRS memo says Trump's tax returns must be turned over to Congress. The confidential draft memo says tax returns must be given to Congress unless the president asserts executive privilege - https://wapo.st/2QfrRvW

Democratic calls for impeaching President Trump are growing louder. Democrats are incensed by the Trump administration's efforts to block their investigations, and many rank and file members see impeachment as the remedy - https://nyti.ms/2QfYUQo

  • House Democrats who are seen as vulnerable in 2020 are walking a fine line when it comes to impeachment talk - https://politi.co/2QfSukh

The investigations

  • Former White House counsel Don McGahn ignored a subpoena from the House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday. The committee is considering holding him in contempt - https://cnn.it/2QcQfy4
  • The House Judiciary Committee issued new subpoenas on Tuesday for former White House officials Hope Hicks and Annie Donaldson - https://cnn.it/2QcQMQA
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller's team is reportedly uneasy about the prospect of him testifying in front of a House committee - https://cnn.it/2wcq7dF

No budget deal. Congressional leaders and the Trump administration were unable to reach an agreement on the federal budget to raise the debt limit. If they can't come to an agreement, automatic spending cuts will kick in later this year - https://politi.co/2Qh67zV

  • The two sides are pushing for a two-year budget agreement to avoid the possibility of another government shutdown - https://wapo.st/2QiRs75

Beto O'Rourke and Bill De Blasio cratering in new poll. former Vice President Joe Biden leads the 2020 Democratic field, but Bernie Sanders, Beto O'Rourke and New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio are seeing their support drop - https://wapo.st/2Qh5qqj

Democratic turnout in 2020 could hit a whopping 67%. A study from the University of Florida predicts a "100-year flood" for Democrats at the polls next year - http://bit.ly/2QfqPjy

North Korea blasts Biden. The North Korean news agency called the former vice president "a snob bereft of elementary quality as a human being." The agency also slammed Biden for falling asleep at a speech by President Barack Obama in 2011 - https://nyp.st/2wmuT8F

Facebook still a haven for disinformation. A new study shows junk news is still proliferating on Facebook ahead of the European elections this month - https://tcrn.ch/2Qi9BlB

Rural Americans struggling. A new poll shows rural Americans are suffering from financial insecurity and struggling to find healthcare - https://n.pr/2QfSO2t

Sea levels rising faster than previously thought. A new study says global warming could lead to sea levels rising 6 feet by the end of the century, which threatens coastal cities like New York and Miami - https://cnn.it/2QiQ98b


1804 - The Lewis and Clark Expedition officially begins as the Corps of Discovery departs from St. Charles, Missouri.

1807 - A grand jury indicts former Vice President Aaron Burr on a charge of treason.

1826 - HMS Beagle departs on its first voyage.

1849 - Future President Abraham Lincoln is issued a patent for an invention to lift boats, making him the only U.S. President to ever hold a patent.

1856 - Congressman Preston Brooks of South Carolina severely beats Senator Charles Sumner of Massachusetts with a cane in the hall of the U.S. Senate for a speech Sumner had made regarding Southerners and slavery.

1872 - President Ulysses S. Grant signs the Amnesty Act into law, restoring full civil and political rights to all but about 500 Confederate sympathizers.

1900 - The Associated Press is formed in New York City as a non-profit news cooperative.

1906 - The Wright Brothers are granted U.S. patent number 821,393 for their "Flying-Machine."

1972 - Richard Nixon became the first U.S. president to visit Moscow.

1992 - Johnny Carson ended his nearly 30-year career as the host of The Tonight Show.

2017 - A suicide bomber killed 22 people attending an Ariana Grande concert in Manchester, England.

Policy News

Office of the State Auditor releases audits of the Utah State Fair Corporation
The Office of the State Auditor today announced the release of two Audits of the Utah State Fair Corporation.  The Office identified one finding:  Inappropriate Oversight and Lack of Approval over Employee Expense Reimbursements. 
Lime picks UCAIR for sweet clean air donation deal
The Utah Clean Air Partnership has become the exclusive beneficiary of the Lime Hero donation program in Utah.
Over 30 Utah businesses commit to challenge to elevate women in the workplace
33 businesses and organizations accepted the ElevateHer Challenge to elevate women in business, bringing the total number of businesses taking the corporate challenge sponsored by the Women's Leadership Institute (WLI) to 229.

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Wise Words


"Happiness is not something you postpone for the future; it is something you design for the present." Jim Rohn

Lighter Side

War War

"There's nothing better for taking your mind off a looming trade war than a loomingwarwar." - STEPHEN COLBERT

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