utah policy logo

The UtahPolicy.com daily newsletter gets you up to speed on the top local and national news about politics and public policy. Send news tips or feedback to bschott@utahpolicy.com, or message us on Twitter.

utah insights

Situational awareness - June 17, 2020

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City


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

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

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

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

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

  • Republican candidates for governor tangle in a primetime televised debate.
  • Utah lawmakers set to grapple with an $850 million revenue shortfall.
  • The Trump administration sues to block the publication of a book by former national security adviser John Bolton.

Thanks for subscribing to Utah's must-read daily political news rundown.

If you know of friends or colleagues who would benefit from our daily news roundup, please encourage them to sign up for our newsletter.

zions bank sponsorship ad

Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Screenshots/20200616_KUTV_Debate.jpgRepublican candidates for governor tangle over coronavirus and the economy in primetime debate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Long-simmering tensions between the four candidates for governor boiled over during Tuesday nights' primetime debate in downtown Salt Lake City.
images/1000px_Capitol_Photos/Utah_Capitol_01.jpgLawmakers to tackle $850 million revenue shortfall in special session beginning Thursday [Updated]
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Utah state government is going to be $850 million short as the current fiscal year ends June 30 and the new fiscal year starts July 1, new revenue estimates say.
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgBernick and Schott on politics podcast: Who is selling live spiders on eBay?
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
It's time for a Tuesday roundup of the big news in Utah politics with Managing Editor Bryan Schott and Contributing Editor Bob Bernick.
images/1000px_Screenshots/20200616_Mendenhall_MSNBC.pngMendenhall says it's 'almost laughable' how few Utahns are observing coronavirus safety measures
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Salt Lake City Mayor Erin Mendenhall said Tuesday she was discouraged by the number of people in her city ignoring guidelines to prevent the spread of the coronavirus.
images/1000px_Mugs/Donald_Trump_01.jpgAnalysis: Support for Trump could be political Kryptonite for Republican congressional candidates in Utah
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
You may recall that when former GOP 4th District Rep. Mia Love lost a really close race to Democrat Ben McAdams two years ago, President Donald Trump tweeted out that Love had not shown him much love, and that was the reason she lost.Well, Trump was likely wrong.
images/1000px_Mugs/Jon_Huntsman_02.jpgHuntsman grabs narrow lead over Cox in new poll
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Former Gov. Jon Huntsman has pulled ahead of current Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox by the narrowest of margins according to a new poll of likely Republican primary voters.
images/1000px_Mugs/Ray_Suarez_01.jpgPodcast: The revolution will be televised - A conversation with Ray Suarez
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Veteran journalist Ray Suarez joins us for a conversation about race relations and the nationwide protests that have broken out following the murder of George Floyd.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/coronavirus_smartphone.jpgUtah's multi-million dollar contact tracing app still can't track person-to-person contacts
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
It's been more than a month since Utah officials rolled out the "Healthy Together" app, which was supposed to assist in tracking the movements of people infected with the coronavirus and who they might have come in contact with. Even though the state has spent more than $2 million on the app so far, it still lacks the technology needed to perform the promised robust contact tracing.
images/1000px_Mugs/Donald_Trump_06.jpgAnalysis: Trump support in Utah lagging among moderate Republicans and faithful members of the LDS Church
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
GOP President Donald Trump is not very popular in Utah -- a statistic that is amazing in and of itself.
images/1000px_Mugs/Spencer_Cox_02.jpgCox reels in campaign donation from nation's largest teacher's union
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Spencer Cox's campaign nabbed a $75,000 donation from the National Education Association according to financial disclosures. 

sl chamber task force 10


Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Book club

The Trump administration sued former national security adviser John Bolton on Tuesday to block him from publishing a book about his time in the White House [Reuters].

President Donald Trump may sue his niece to prevent the publication of a tell-all book she is authoring [Daily Beast].

Police reform

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on policing, but critics say it doesn't go far enough [NBC News].

Republicans in the Senate are rallying around a police reform bill to require more disclosure about the use of force and ban chokeholds [Politico].


Florida, Arizona and Texas have reported a record number of daily Covid-19 cases this week [CNN].

Beijing expands its lockdown as officials cancel more than 1,000 flights [Bloomberg].

Scientists say a commonly available drug could help save the lives of patients who are seriously ill with coronavirus [BBC].

Dr. Anthony Fauci says he doesn't see the need for another Covid-19 lockdown yet, but he's nervous about states re-opening too soon [Daily Beast].

President Trump mentioned an AIDS vaccine that does not exist while promising a Covid-19 vaccine by the end of the year [Forbes].


House Republicans are furious as Speaker Nancy Pelosi is asking House committees to require the wearing of masks [WaPo].

Trump's Tulsa rally

The mayor of Tulsa said Tuesday he was nervous about a full arena amid a rising number of coronavirus cases in Oklahoma. He also said he didn't know about Trump's rally until the city was contacted about police support for the event [Twitter].

The Trump campaign is exploring the use of an overflow facility for his Saturday rally [CNN].

A judge denied a lawsuit from some Oklahoma residents seeking to block Trump's rally [WaPo].


Nebraska Democrats have denounced their nominee for U.S. Senate and called on him to drop out of the race after he made sexually explicit comments about one of his staffers in a group text [AP].


Retail spending jumped a record 17.7 percent in May [AP].

Bank profits in the U.S. plummeted 70 percent during the first quarter of 2020 [Reuters].

Spending on renewable energy will surpass oil and gas drilling for the first time next year [Bloomberg].

This will end well

North Korea says it's sending soldiers to a number of sites along the border with South Korea [AP].


Policy News

images/1000px_Logos/WTC_Utah_Logo.pngGlobal logistics in a COVID world: Building resilience with supply chains
Join World Trade Center Utah, Utah Inland Port Authority and Air & Sea International for a webinar discussing global logistics in a COVID world. Attendees will learn about COVID-19's impact on logistics and shipping, as well as what Utah companies can do to work around those changes and build resilience in their supply chains. 
$40 million Small Business Impact Grant program now accepting applications
Salt Lake County's new Small Business Impact Grant (SBIG) program is now open and accepting applications.
UCAIR opens 2020 grants call for proposals
To continue progress toward improving our air quality, the Utah Clean Air Partnership (UCAIR) opens its annual grants program. The application, guidelines and criteria for the UCAIR Grants can be found at  https://www.ucair.org/grants/. Submissions will be accepted through July 31, 2020.
'Elder Abuse Awareness Day' highlights investment fraud risk for seniors due to COVID-19 isolation
On World Elder Abuse Awareness Day, the Utah Department of Commerce urges Utahns to be alert to the dangers to seniors from investment fraud during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Salt Lake Chamber honors Governor Gary Herbert as a Giant in our City
Governor Gary R. Herbert was recognized for his contributions and service to the State of Utah at the 41st Giant in our City. The award, presented by the Salt Lake Chamber Thursday night at the historic Redwood Drive-In Theatre, is given for exceptional and distinguished public service, as well as extraordinary professional achievement, and is widely recognized as the most prestigious business award in the state of Utah.

More National Headlines


1579 - Sir Francis Drake claims a land he calls Nova Albion (modern California) for England.

1775 - Revolutionary War: Colonists inflict heavy casualties on British forces while losing the Battle of Bunker Hill.

1885 - The Statue of Liberty arrives in New York Harbor.

1930 - President Herbert Hoover signs the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act into law.

1963 - The Supreme Court rules 8-1 in Abington School District v. Schempp against requiring the reciting of Bible verses and the Lord's Prayer in public schools.

1972 - Watergate scandal: Five White House operatives are arrested for burgling the offices of the Democratic National Committee, in an attempt to illegally wiretap the opposition.

1994 - Following a televised low-speed highway chase, O.J. Simpson is arrested for the murders of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown Simpson, and her friend Ronald Goldman.

Wise Words

Still True

"Despite everything, I believe that people are really good at heart." Anne Frank

Lighter Side


"Big crowds are expected, even welcomed. But anyone who gets a ticket has to agree in writing not to sue Trump if they get sick. For real, you have to click this liability release to register to go. It's like being pregnant on a roller coaster. But go ahead and take a big swig of bleach before you come anyway." - JIMMY KIMMEL

facebook link twitter link youtube link linked in logo

Listen to us on_Apple Podcasts

Listen on Stitcher

Listen on Google Play Music

Subscribers may receive special messages with information about new features, special offers, or public policy messages from clients and advertisers.

Advertise With Us