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Situational awareness - July 31, 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 are the stories you need to pay attention to this morning:

  • Utahns say the state is headed in the right direction, but aren't so sure about the nation as a whole.
  • Lawmakers may "tweak" Utah's medical marijuana law.
  • Democratic debate night one.

Conversation BubbleWe want your feedback!

I love hearing from you! Send your news tips or feedback to me at bschott@utahpolicy.com. or you can message me on Twitter.

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 212th day of the year. There are 153 days remaining in 2019.

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

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

155 days until candidates can begin to gather signatures to get on the 2020 ballot (1/2/2020)

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

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

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

225 days to the final day of the 2020 Utah Legislature (3/12/2020)

226 days to the opening of candidate filing for the 2020 election (3/13/2020)

244 days until the deadline for candidates to submit signatures to be placed on the 2020 primary ballot (3/31/2019)

328 days to the 2020 Utah primary election (6/23/2020)

348 days to the 2020 Democratic National Convention in Milwaukee (7/13/2020)

390 days to the 2020 Republican National Convention in Charlotte (8/24/2020)

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

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Logos/UtahPolicycomY2_Analytics_Logo_2.pngSlim majority of Utahns say the state is on the right track, but only a third think the same about the country as a whole

 A slim majority of Utahns say the state is headed in the right direction, but only a third feel the same way as the country as a whole.
images/1000px_Logos/Bernick_and_Schott_Logo_1000.jpgI'll be your dungeon master of politics - Bernick and Schott on politics

 Rob Bishop announced he's retiring from Congress. Which Republicans are considering running to replace him? 
images/1000px_Logos/Zions_Bank_Logo_01.pngUtahns' confidence in the economy moderates slightly but remains strong

 The Zions Bank Utah Consumer Attitude Index (CAI) decreased 2.4 points to 113.3 in July. The year-over-year CAI ticked down slightly by 0.3 points. In comparison, the national Consumer Confidence Index increased 11.4 points to 135.7 this month.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/GOED_NewsRoomImages_NGAOutdoorRecEvent_072519_v1_1.jpgUtah Office of Outdoor Recreation participates in National Outdoor Recreation learning Network launch

Recently, as part of the National Governors Association conference in Salt Lake City, Utah played host to a press conference organized by NGA Solutions where the National Outdoor Recreation Learning Network was announced.
images/1000px_Mugs/Ben_McAdams_01.jpgAnalysis: Ben McAdams' re-election campaign just got a lot dicier

 Rep. Ben McAdams The biggest threat to Rep. Ben McAdams second term in Congress materialized on Monday.
images/mugs-300/LaVarr_Webb.jpgWhy we do polling . . . and why it is reliable

LaVarr Webb, UtahPolicy.com publisherAs readers of UtahPolicy.com might have noticed, we're back in the business of providing regular survey research. We're measuring sentiment on key local and national issues, along with matching up candidates and determining how much Utahns like their politicians. 
images/1000px_Mugs/Rob_Bishop_02.jpgBishop makes it official. He won't run for a 10th term in 2020

Rep. Rob Bishop announced on Monday afternoon he will not run for another term in Congress. 
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190729_Mia_Love_CNN.jpgWatch: Mia Love says Trump's Twitter are 'the worst of American politics'

Former Utah Rep. Mia Love is stepping up her criticism of President Donald Trump's racist attacks on minority members of Congress. 
images/1000px_Screenshots/20190729_Stewart_CNN.jpgVideo: Stewart praises Ratcliffe's nomination to be Director of National Intelligence

Rep. Chris Stewart says fellow Republican John Ratcliffe, with whom he serves on the House Intelligence Committee, is a great choice by President Donald Trump to be the next Director of National Intelligence. 
images/1000px_Logos/SL_Chamber_Logo_1000.jpgNancy Kerrigan announced as Keynote Speaker for 2019 Women & Business Conference and ATHENA Awards Luncheon

Two-time Olympic medalist and U.S. National Champion Nancy Kerrigan will serve as the keynote speaker for the 2019 Women & Business Conference and ATHENA Awards Luncheon, the Salt Lake Chamber announced today.  
images/1000px_Logos/Cities_Work_Logo.jpgCities Work podcast: Mona Lisa or Madonna - What art means to a community

Whether it's that subtle smile on a painting you see, the up-beat pace of a tune that moves you, or a story that enhances your perspective, art is an element that elevates the quality of a community.
images/Resized_Article_Images/Salt_Lake_Tribune.jpgMost Utahns want the Salt Lake Tribune to survive, but just over a quarter say they're readers

Most Utahns want to see the Salt Lake Tribune survive their financial problems and remain in business according to a new survey.

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Salt Lake Tribune



Motor city showdown. Democratic presidential hopefuls faced off in night one of the second debate. Sens. Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren fended off attacks from some of the more moderate candidates looking to make a splash [Politico].

  • Liberals and moderates clashed over proposals to fix healthcare and climate change [WaPo].

Family separations. The ACLU says in the year since the Trump administration officially ended family separations at the southern border, more than 900 migrant children have been removed from their families [NYT].

"Everybody's a racist." President Donald Trump said during an interview Tuesday that Democrats have called him a racist so often the word is losing its meaning [Politico].

  • Trump claimed Tuesday he's the "least racist person in the world," but a new poll shows most Americans disagree with his statement [WaPo].

Testing...testing. North Korea fired several short-range missiles in their second test in less than a week [AP].

Farmer bailout. A new study finds most of the $16 billion bailout for farmers impacted by Trump's trade war with China went to the wealthiest farms [Bloomberg].

Important number. The most common age in the U.S. is 27. However, the most common age among whites is 58 while the most common age for Hispanics is 11 [WaPo].

Russian hacking. A federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit filed by the Democratic National Committee against the Trump campaign over their alleged involvement in the hacking of Democratic Party email accounts during the 2016 election [Politico].

California takes a shot at Trump. A new law requires presidential candidates to disclose five years of tax returns in order to be eligible to appear on the ballot. The law is almost certain to spark a legal challenge [LA Times].

Campaign cash. A pro-Trump super PAC raised more than $17 million in the first six months of 2019 [Axios].

Weird. Facebook is getting closer to developing a method to allow typing directly with your brain [CNN].


1498 - On his third voyage to the New World, Christopher Columbus became the first European to discover the island of Trinidad.

1777 - The Second Continental Congress passes a resolution that the services of the Marquis de Lafayette "be accepted, and that, in consideration of his zeal, illustrious family and connexions, have the rank and commission of major-general of the United States."

1790 - The first U.S. patent is issued to inventor Samuel Hopkins for a potash process.

1792 - Director David Rittenhouse laid the cornerstone in Philadelphia for the U.S. Mint, the first building of the federal government.

1932 - the Nazi Party wins more than 38% of the vote in German elections.

1964 - Ranger 7 sends back the first close-up photographs of the moon.

1974 - Watergate figure John Ehrlichman was sentenced to prison for his role in the break-in at the office of Daniel Ellsberg's psychiatrist. He was in prison for 18 months. Ellsberg was the Pentagon consultant who leaked the "Pentagon Papers."

1991 - Congress voted to overturn a 43-year-old law and voted to allow women to fly military warplanes in combat.

2012 - Michael Phelps breaks the record set in 1964 by Larisa Latynina for the most medals won at the Olympics.

2017 - Anthony Scaramucci resigned after 10 days as President Donald Trump's communications director.

Policy News

images/1000px_Logos/Congressional_News_02.jpgSen. Lee introduces Higher Education Reform and Opportunity Act
 Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced the Higher Education Reform and Opportunity (HERO) Act Tuesday, a bill that brings transparency, accountability, and competition to higher education.
images/1000px_Logos/Congressional_News_01.jpgMcAdams and Hollingsworth offer bipartisan bill to ease red tape on promising start-ups
 Congressman Ben McAdams (D-UT) and Congressman Trey Hollingsworth (R-IN) have introduced bipartisan legislation to provide commonsense regulatory relief for America's growing companies, including many in the bioscience sector. 
Nominees announced for 1st District Court vacancy
The 1st District Judicial Nominating Commission has selected nominees for a vacancy on the 1st District Court.  The vacancy results from the retirement of Judge Kevin K. Allen, October 16, 2019. The 1st Judicial District includes Box Elder, Cache, and Rich counties. 
Weiler named to 2019 Toll Fellowship class
Forty-eight state leaders from across the country have been selected to participate in The Council of State Governments' 2019 Henry Toll Fellowship, the nation's premier leadership development program for state government officials.
Alarms raised over nuclear waste shipments
Organizations throughout Utah and the southwest are calling on Utah Governor Gary Herbert to stand with the governors of Nevada and New Mexico in opposing the recent actions by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) and the national nuclear waste policies that could lead to new storage facilities for radioactive waste.

More National Headlines

Wise Words


"Let us not seek the Republican answer or the Democratic answer, but the right answer. Let us not seek to fix the blame for the past. Let us accept our own responsibility for the future." John F. Kennedy

Lighter Side

Slow and Old

"That's right - both Democrats and Republicans thought Mueller came off as slow and old. I'm not saying Mueller was bad, but he made Bernie Sanders look like one of the kids from 'Stranger Things.'" - JIMMY FALLON

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