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Situational awareness - June 6, 2020

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City


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

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

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

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

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

  • Mourners remember George Floyd as nationwide protests continue
  • Google warns foreign hackers are targeting political campaigns
  • The audit into emergency coronavirus spending won't be done before the primary election.


Today's question comes from reader Stewart Young.

Which then-sitting politician from Utah was featured on the front page of the New York Times for posing as a ragged patient in New York City as part of an investigation into Medicaid abuse?

Here's the picture:

20200605 Trivia

Send your guesses via email to mailbag@utahpolicy.com. We'll pick a winner at random from the correct answers. 

Good luck!

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

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Article_Photos/Vaccine_01.jpgPoll: Most Utahns believe development of a coronavirus vaccine is a year or more away
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Most Utahns are taking a pragmatic approach to the development of a vaccine for the novel coronavirus. Two-thirds say they believe a vaccine will be available in a year or even longer according to a new survey.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Coronavirus_12.jpgState Auditor says investigation into coronavirus contracts won't be finished before the primary election
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Some possible good news for the gubernatorial campaign of Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox -- State Auditor John Dougall tells UtahPolicy.com that it is "unlikely" his independent audit of the Herbert/Cox administration's "single-source" purchases dealing with the coronavirus will be finished and made public by the June 30 primary election.
images/1000px_Mugs/Bernick_Mug_01.jpgBob Bernick's notebook: Musings on the upcoming primary elections
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
We're coming down to the homestretch in four really interesting Republican primary races -- governor, attorney general, 1st Congressional District and 4th Congressional District.
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt_Romney_10.jpgRomney praises Mattis' criticism of Trump
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Sen. Mitt Romney said Thursday that former Defense Secretary James Mattis blistering criticism of President Trump was "stunning and powerful."
images/1000px_Mugs/Gary_Herbert_05.jpgNearly 7 in 10 Utahns approve of Gov. Gary Herbert's job performance
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
GOP Gov. Gary Herbert's job approval ratings have shot through the roof, a new poll shows, no doubt because of his leadership in the state's fight against the coronavirus.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Republican_Convention_01.jpgThe Republican National Convention is moving out of North Carolina, but Utah officials aren't angling to host
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Could the Republican National Convention be split between two cities this summer? Utah GOP Chairman Derek Brown says it's a distinct possibility. 
images/1000px_Mugs/Mitt__Romney_06.jpgRomney's job approval rating climbs in Utah according to new poll
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Utahns have apparently moved past Sen. Mitt Romney's vote to impeach President Donald Trump as his job approval ratings have rebounded significantly.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20200602_CD1_Debate.jpgFirst District Republicans offer up few policy details during televised debate
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
The four Republicans vying to replace Rob Bishop in Congress took part in a debate on Tuesday afternoon that was woefully short on specifics, but long on rhetoric, with a spat over pickleball thrown in for good measure.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20200602_AG_debate.jpgReyes and Leavitt trade verbal blows in fiery AG debate
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Wow. If you want to see how a real political debate can go, back and forth, blow to blow, you need to watch Tuesday's televised debate between Republican attorney general candidates Sean Reyes and David Leavitt.
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgBernick and Schott on politics podcast: 'A bunker of bad debates'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Managing Editor Bryan Schott and Contributing Editor Bob Bernick are back to give perspective and context to the top Utah political news from the last few days.

sl chamber task force 10


Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



George Floyd

Mourners memorialized George Floyd at his funeral on Thursday [CNN].

Rev. Al Sharpton announced a new March on Washington in August. The event will be led by families of black people killed by police [CNN].

Twitter removed a Trump campaign video tribute to George Floyd over a copyright claim [Bloomberg].

Protests continue

President Trump agreed to begin sending home troops he had ordered to Washington [NYT].

The White House beefed up security by adding a fence around the complex in response to more protests [CNN].

President Trump shared a letter on Twitter that called peaceful protesters "terrorists" [CNN].


Sparks flew in the Senate on Thursday as Sen. Rand Paul held up an anti-lynching bill that enjoys bipartisan support [Politico].

2020 campaign

Joe Biden said Thursday the "vast majority" of Americans are decent, but there are 10 to 15 percent who are "not very good people" [NYT].

Polling shows President Trump is losing support among a key group of supporters, Evangelical voters [NYT].

The Republican National Committee will begin visiting possible convention sites in the coming days as they seek to move their national convention out of North Carolina [The Hill].

Google is warning foreign hackers are targeting the emails of Trump and Biden campaign staffers [Politico].


Another 1.9 million Americans sought jobless aid last week, but that number is down from the previous week [AP].

Friday morning's jobs report is expected to show unemployment hitting 20 percent or higher [Bloomberg].

American Airlines announced they would add a significant number of flights to their schedule next month [Reuters].

Casinos in Las Vegas were allowed to open for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic began [AP].

Central banks in Europe are urging action on climate change [Reuters].


A leading medical journal retracted a study that suggested the use of hydroxychloroquine led to a higher death rate and increased heart problems after the authors could not complete an audit about their data [Axios].


Last month was the hottest May on record [Bloomberg].


Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report 6-5-20
Outdoors Report-- Salt Lake Tribune: Regulations finally coming for scenic air tours over Utah's national parks-- Salt Lake Tribune: Nature Conservancy buys stretch along Virgin River for $4.3M, protecting vital wildlife corridor near Zion National Park -- KSL.com: 3 reasons Flaming Gorge should be on your summer vacation list-- KSL.com: How to go rock climbing outside safely during a global pandemic-- KSL.com: Campground use increases in pandemic, sparking bad behavior-- KSL.com: 3 places to go whitewater rafting around Utah Venues and Organizations Re-Opening-- Alf Engen Ski Museum -- Artworks Gallery-- BallroomUtah Dance Studio-- Bipolar Art & Jewelry -- Easely Art Studio -- Eccles Community Art Center-- Garage on Beck-- Gardner Village-- Gilgal Sculpture Garden -- Flamenco del Lago -- Heber Valley Railroad -- Historic Wendover Airfield Museum -- ImprovBroadway -- Lagoon Amusement Park -- Legacy School of Dance -- Lyrical Opera Theatre -- Make Salt Lake -- The Monarch -- Parker Theatre -- Redwood Drive-In Theatre -- Salt Lake Bicycle Tours -- Salt Lake Running Company -- SCERA Center-- St. George Dinosaur Discovery Site at Johnson Farm -- St. George Musical Theater-- Thanksgiving Point-- This Is the Place Heritage Park -- Tracy Aviary-- Tuacahn Amphitheater-- Uintah County Heritage Museum -- Urban Arts Gallery -- Utah Artists School of Ballet-- Utah's Hogle Zoo -- Utah State University Extension Weber -- Wheeler Historic FarmVirtual 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 HouseLocal Museums-- Clark Planetarium Activities for Home-- Discovery Gateway -- The Leonardo At Home-- Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art Virtual Tour -- This is the Place Heritage Park-- Utah Museum of Contemporary Art: Art Everyday -- Utah Museum of Fine Art at Home-- Woodbury Art Museum Create ClubArt/Galleries-- ACE Virtual Coloring Book-- BYU Museum of Art App-- Clever Octopus Kits-- Free Art Streamed-- Google Art & Culture Project-- Kimball Art Center Lesson Plans and ARTS Tours-- Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art Virtual Tour -- Salt Lake Gallery Stroll-- SCERA Quarantine Art Club-- SpyHop Art Shop Classes-- SpyHop Rewired Workshops-- Utah Arts Alliance Online-- Visual Art Institute Virtual Classes -- Woodbury Art Museum Create ClubBotanical/Zoological-- Hogle Zoo-- Loveland Living Planet Aquarium-- Ogden Nature Center-- Red Butte Garden Virtual Resources-- Thanksgiving Point -- Tracy AviaryDance-- Covey Center for the Arts Dance Classes-- Repertory Dance Theatre Dance Classes-- Ririe Woodbury Virtual Movement Dance Classes Theatre-- "The Corona Conundrum" through June 6, Parker Theatre-- "The Scarlet Pimpernel" through June 20, SCERA Center-- "Hairspray" through June 27, Hurricane Valley Theatrical Company -- Hale Centre Theatre Brighter Days -- On Pitch Performing Arts Virtual Concerts-- Pioneer Theatre Company The Show Goes On..Line-- Salt Lake Acting Company: We Got This Story CollectionLesson Plans for Children-- Clark Planetarium Activities for Home-- Discovery Gateway-- Museum Lesson Plans-- National Student Essay Competition -- Natural History Museum of Utah: Research Quest Live-- Red Butte Garden Virtual Resources-- SpyHop Art Shop Classes-- SpyHop Rewired Workshops-- Swaner Eco Center-- Thanksgiving Point -- Utah Film Center-- Utah Symphony Education from Home-- Utah Opera Education from HomeFilms-- DOCUTAH International Documentary Film Festival-- Holt/Smithson Foundation Friday Films-- Salt Lake Film Society-- SpyHop Rewired Workshops-- Sundance Collab-- Tumbleweeds Film Festival On Demand -- Utah Film Center has a variety of Film Streaming OptionsHumanities-- Kings English Bookshop Story Time -- National Student Essay Competition -- Mapping Literary Utah  -- SLC Library Community Resources Page-- Utah Humanities #VirtualCampfireMusic-- The Depot SLC-- Locals Lounge Every Night at 7PM-- The Metropolitan Opera-- Orchestra of Southern Utah YouTube-- SpyHop Rewired Workshops-- Utah Chamber Artists Virtual Vitruosity-- Utah Symphony YouTubeSTEM-- Clark Planetarium STEM Activities for Home-- Discovery Gateway STEM Learning Lab-- SpyHop Art Shop Classes-- Stem Action Center STEM in the Home-- Thanksgiving Point LiveHealth & Wellness-- Mindfulness: Online by UMFA-- Nicole Yoga Online-- Seek Studio Everywhere Et cetra-- The Greatest Showman, Movie Sing-Along, Friday, 9 p.m., Murray Park Amphitheater, 495 East 5300 South, Salt Lake City-- Baby Animal Birthday Party, Friday and Saturday, Thanksgiving Point, 3003 North Thanksgiving Way, Lehi-- Full Moon Lift Rides, Friday and Saturday, 8:30 11 p.m., Sundance Resort, 8841 North Alpine Loop Road, Provo-- Community Marketplace, Saturday, 11 a.m. 4 p.m., Tooele Valley Wellness and Community Center, 140 East 200 South, Tooele 
Public Health and Economic Emergency Commission recommends most of Utah transitions to a smart green risk level
On June 2, the Public Health and Economic Emergency Commission unanimously voted to recommend, after reviewing current, real-time data, adopting modified yellow and a smart green risk phases in the state's phasedguidelines in the Utah Leads Together Plan. The new phases will allow nearly all Utah businesses the opportunity to activate a plan to open safely and help the economy move forward. 
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgWebinar: PPP loan forgiveness
The good news is that Bloomberg ranked Utah first in the nation for SBA loans awarded as a percent of eligible payroll at 97.5% meaning those eligible have been receiving those loans.

More National Headlines


1851 - Harriet Beecher Stowe's anti-slavery serial Uncle Tom's Cabin starts a ten-month run in the National Era abolitionist newspaper.

1916 - Louis Brandeis is sworn in as a Justice of the Supreme Court. He is the first American Jew to hold such a position.

1933 - Congress ends the use of the gold standard in the U.S, passing a law that nullifies the right of creditors to demand payment in gold.

1956 - Elvis Presley introduces his new single "Hound Dog" on The Milton Berle Show, scandalizing the audience with his suggestive hip movements.

1967 - The Six-Day War began between Israel and the Arab states of Egypt, Syria and Jordan.

1968 - Sen. Robert Kennedy was shot by Sirhan Sirhan, a Palestinian immigrant, in Los Angeles. Kennedy died the next day.

1976 - The Teton River Dam in Idaho collapses, flooding 300 square miles and causing an estimated $1 billion in damage.

1981 - The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that five people in Los Angeles have a rare form of pneumonia seen only in patients with weakened immune systems, in what turns out to be the first recognized cases of AIDS.

2004 - Former President Ronald Reagan died at the age of 93 of complications from Alzheimer's disease.

Wise Words


"The only thing necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to do nothing." Edmund Burke

Lighter Side


"The Georgia Department of Public Health posted a bar chart that appeared to show that new confirmed cases had dropped each day over two weeks. Good news, until it turned out that chart put the days in the wrong order. The Georgia Department of Public Health is just a little confused. It explains their sign, 'Put a mask on your elbow and cough directly into the face.'" - STEPHEN COLBERT

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