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Situational awareness - July 1, 2020

Good morning from Salt Lake City

Let's Wednesday!


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

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

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

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

  • Spencer Cox leads Jon Huntsman after the first wave of election results.
  • Burgess Owens grabs the GOP nomination in CD4.
  • Blake Moore and Bob Stevenson are in a close race in the GOP primary in CD1.
  • Republican voters kick Sen. Lyle Hillyard out of office after 40 years in the legislature.

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Mugs/Spencer_Cox_02.jpgCox leads Huntsman after first round of ballots. Owens grabs 4th District nod over Coleman. Republicans dump Hillyard
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox forged a 2.77 percent lead over Jon Huntsman after the first wave of results in Tuesday's Utah primary elections, but the race is far from over, as election officials say there could be as many as 100,000 ballots outstanding.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Coronavirus_economy_11.jpgUtahns are more worried about the impact of Covid-19 on the economy than public health
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
While Utahns still worry more about how the coronavirus affects the economy rather than public health, with new virus cases running high in Utah that pro-open-up sentiment is not as strong as it was last April, a new poll finds.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Vote_By_Mail_Ballot.jpgHow to watch Tuesday night's election results like a pro
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
We may not know who wins the hotly contested GOP race for governor until mid-July. But, there are some key indicators from the results over the first few days that will give us some hints about who is doing well, and who may be in trouble. 
images/1000px_Screenshots/20200629_Stewart_CNN.jpgStewart backs White House claim that Trump did not know about Russian bounties on U.S. soldiers
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Rep. Chris Stewart defended the White House's claim that President Trump was not briefed on a reported Russian effort offering bounties for the killing of U.S. soldiers in Afghanistan. However, shortly after Stewart made his claim on national TV, the New York Times reported that Trump was given a written briefing on the Russian bounties in late February. 
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Pence_Mask_01.jpgHerbert urged Pence to encourage mask wearing to control the spread of coronavirus
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Gov. Gary Herbert reportedly asked Vice President Mike Pence to do more to encourage the wearing of masks in public during a phone call on Friday.
images/1000px_Mugs/Donald_Trump_13.jpgPoll: Most Utahns believe the Trump administration has mostly failed at improving race relations
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
A slim majority of Utahns say President Donald Trump's administration has mostly failed at improving race relations in the U.S. according to a new survey.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/20200601_GOV_Debate.jpgAnalysis: Cox, Huntsman and Hughes all have very different paths to victory on Tuesday
By Bob Bernick, Contributing Editor
Tuesday is primary election day in Utah, likely one of the most interesting in a generation -- with four GOP candidates each in an open governor's race, an open 1st Congressional District race and a 4th Congressional District race where GOP leaders deeply desire to reclaim the seat from the Democratic Party.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Sales_Tax_05.jpgUtah taxable sales volatility spikes in March, April
By Doug MacDonald, Chief Economist, Econowest Associates
If Utah had a VIX index for its taxable sales, it would be at an all-time record high.  Of the 38 taxable sales economic sectors, 14 had higher than positive 10% in March year-over-year sales.  Another 14 sectors showed below negative 10% in March.  This is all-time record volatility since the State began tallying taxable sales in 1980.

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Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Russian bounties

Intercepted electronic data showed large financial transfers from a Russian bank to a Taliban-linked account was cited as evidence supporting the conclusion that Russia offered bounties for killing American troops in Afghanistan [NYT].

The White House was first informed about the Russian bounty operation in early 2019 [WaPo].


"Please, please, please wear a face-covering when you go out in public," said Surgeon General Jerome Adams on Tuesday [Bloomberg].

Dr. Anthony Fauci warned the U.S. could see 100,000 coronavirus cases per day if nothing is done to slow the spread of the virus [BBC].

Congressional leaders are now urging Americans to wear a mask in public [WaPo].

The number of Covid-19 cases in the U.S. jumped by 47,000 Tuesday, the biggest one-day spike during the pandemic [Reuters].

Goldman Sachs says if Americans were to wear masks in public, it would stop the economy from losing 5 percent GDP [MarketWatch].

Here's when the coronavirus outbreak could peak in each state [Bloomberg].


The Senate passed an extension of the Paycheck Protection Program to August 8 [CNN].

An economic data point the White House is watching carefully suggests the recovery from the coronavirus may be hitting a plateau [Axios].

Supreme Court

The court ruled in favor of parents in Montana seeking to use a state scholarship program to send their children to religious schools [CNN].

Social media

Facebook removed hundreds of pages and groups related to the far-right "boogaloo" movement [The Verge].


Baseball's minor leagues cancel the entire 2020 season. Many teams face financial ruin without some sort of government help [AP].

The NBA is warning a significant spread of the coronavirus would force the league to pause their season, which is scheduled to relaunch next month in Orlando [SI].


Policy News

Utah Industry Resource Alliance (UIRA) provides support & resources for Utah manufacturers
The Utah Industry Resource Alliance (UIRA) has announced its official launch. UIRA provides all Utah manufacturers with a one-stop source for expert resources to help them improve their bottom lines. UIRA delivers service and outreach to the manufacturing industry in the form of industry-specific training, mentoring and coaching, and becomes a trusted business advisor to its clients. 
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgEquality and inclusion in opportunity: The Black experience in the corporate world
Join us to learn about the experiences of Black professionals in Utah's business community. This is the first in a series of webinars, symposiums, and roundtables as part of the partnership between the Utah Black Chamber and the Salt Lake Chamber to focus on, discuss, and address issues of racism, equality, and inclusion in business.
Wasatch Front Regional Council announces public comment period and open houses for draft 2021-2026 Transportation improvement program
The Wasatch Front Regional Council, in conjunction with the Utah Department of Transportation and the Utah Transit Authority, has identified hundreds of priority transportation projects totaling approximately $3.4 billion to enhance mobility, strengthen the economy, connect communities, increase access to opportunities, and improve health along the Wasatch Front. The public is now invited to provide input on the selected projects.  
images/1000px_Logos/WTC_Utah_Logo.pngSave the date: Virtual trade mission to Israel
The United States is Israel's single largest trading partner. Through World Trade Center (WTC) Utah's Virtual Trade Mission, you can connect directly with Israeli business and government leaders. Utah companies interested in learning about Israel, expanding into the area, or increasing their business in the market are encouraged to register for this Virtual Trade Mission.
Public Health and Economic Emergency Commission emphasizes the importance of wearing masks
On June 25, the Public Health and Economic Emergency Commission unanimously recommended the governor designate a portion of the $1 million for the COVID-19 Outreach and Education Program to directly emphasize the importance of wearing a mask. The Utah Legislature allocated these funds to the Utah Governor's Office of Economic Development during the June 2020 special session.
images/1000px_Logos/CYBER_24_Logo.jpgCYBER24 episode 86: SOC 2 and other Corporate Certs - What, Why? How?
In this episode of the CYBER24 podcast, presented by VLCM, we continue our look cyber frameworks and certifications. We take a deep dive into the popular SOC 2. We learn more about SOC 2, to whom it applies, why some organizations need it, and how they get it.

More National Headlines


1847 - The first U.S. postage stamps were issued.

1863 - The Battle of Gettysburg begins.

1867 - Canada was granted independence by Great Britain.

1870 - The United States Department of Justice formally comes into existence.

1881 - The world's first international telephone call is made between Canada and the United States

1898 - Spanish-American War: Teddy Roosevelt and his Rough Riders led a charge up Cuba's heavily fortified San Juan Hill.

1931 - Wiley Post and Harold Gatty become the first people to circumnavigate the globe in a single-engined monoplane aircraft.

1946 - The U.s. conducted its first post-war test of the atomic bomb at Bikini Atoll in the Pacific.

1963 - Zip codes are introduced for mail in the U.S.

1997 - Hong Kong was returned to China after 156 years as a British territory.

Wise Words

Thought Police

"The most unpardonable sin in society is independence of thought." Emma Goldman

Lighter Side


"Now look, having people believe crazy conspiracy theories and ignore facts - that's nothing new. What is new is that now one of those people lives in the White House." - TREVOR NOAH

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