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Situational awareness - August 2, 2019

Good morning from Salt Lake City, and TGIF!

This is 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:

  • Utah Republicans and Democrats have widely differing opinions on climate change.
  • Utahns rally for full Medicaid expansion.
  • More than half of House Democrats now favor impeachment

Heads up. The SL Tribune is out Friday morning with their latest poll on the race to replace Jackie Biskupsi as head of Utah's capital city. The survey shows a statistical tie for the lead between Sen. Luz Escamilla and former Sen. Jim Dabakis. City councilwoman Erin Mendenhall is in third place.

Friday trivia. There will be no trivia question this week as I'm heading on vacation. We'll be back with more stumpers soon.

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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 214th day of the year. There are 151 days remaining in 2019.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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Today At Utah Policy

images/1000px_Article_Photos/Climate_Change_01.jpgUtah Republicans, Democrats have wildly differing views on changing weather patterns and climate change

 The newest Utah Political Trends survey asked Utahns about changing weather patterns in the state and whether those changes are due to human-caused climate change, or just normal year-to-year variations in weather patterns.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Kyrene_Gibb_01.jpgPollcast: A conversation about public opinion polling with Kyrene Gibb of Y2 Analytics

 UtahPolicy.com is partnering with Y2 Analytics to launch the Utah Political Trends project to measure public attitudes of Utahns on several issues.
images/1000px_Mugs/Bernick_Mug_01.jpgBob Bernick's notebook: Remembering Norma Matheson

 Many fine testimonials this past week for former Utah First Lady Norma Matheson upon her passing last Sunday.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Tariffs_01.jpgJust over half of Utahns say tariffs are a good foreign policy tool

 A slim majority of Utahns says they think the use of tariffs on goods imported from other countries as a foreign policy tool is a good idea.
images/1000px_Article_Photos/Polling_Vector_01.jpgSo, about our job approval polls...

  "What's up with your new approval rating polls? They seem lower than most past polls," is a common refrain we've heard from several Utah politicos since we unveiled the first batch of results in July.
images/1000px_Mugs/Jim_Dabakis_01.jpgPoll: Dabakis leading SLC Mayor's race; Cox and Huntsman frontrunners in 2020 gubernatorial contest

 Former Sen. Jim Dabakis has a double-digit lead in the race to replace Jackie Biskupski as Salt Lake City Mayor according to a new survey.

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Deseret News

Salt Lake Tribune



Impeachment. More than half of House Democrats now support opening an impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump [Politico].

Heading for the exits. Texas Rep. Will Hurd, the only black Republican in the House, announced he would not run for re-election in 2020. Hurd is the only Republican to represent a district along the southwestern border. Hurd's retirement is the ninth House Republican to announce his retirement this year [NYT].

  • Hurd's announcement has Republicans in Texas worried about holding on to a district Democrats are desperate to flip in 2020 [Texas Tribune].

More tariffs. China is threatening retaliation if President Trump goes through with a new round of tariffs he announced on Thursday afternoon. Global markets tumbled on the news of the potential renewed trade war between the two nations [AP].

  • Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin wanted to give China a heads up about Trump's new tariffs but was overruled [Bloomberg].

Comey. The Justice Department declined to prosecute former FBI director James Comey after determining he mishandled two memos he wrote about his interactions with President Trump that contained classified information [AP].

2020. When will the Democratic field start to shrink? There are still 24 Democrats running for president following the first two rounds of debates [NYT].

  • The Nevada GOP will use a poll of the party's state central committee to re-nominate President Trump instead of the usual caucus process next year [LVRJ].

Budget deal. The Senate passed the massive budget deal that raises the debt ceiling, sending the measure to President Trump's desk [CNN].

A stark warning. The FBI is warning fringe conspiracy theories now present a domestic terrorism threat [Yahoo!].

Hmmm. Rep. John Ratcliffe, President Trump's pick to be the next Director of National Intelligence, is considered to be "relatively disengaged" from his work on the House Intelligence Committee and is little known by rank-and-file workers in the various spy agencies he may potentially head up [WaPo].

  • Ratcliffe has claimed he led a massive roundup of immigrant workers in 2008 when he was a federal prosecutor. Court documents show that's not true [WaPo].

Russia. As expected, the U.S. is exiting a three-decade-old arms control treaty with Russia and plans to test a new missile in the coming weeks which would have been prohibited under the pact [AP].

Climate. July may have been the hottest month ever recorded in human history [CNN]. 


1610 - During Henry Hudson's search for the Northwest Passage, he sails into what is now known as Hudson Bay.

1776 - The Declaration of Independence, adopted on July 4, was signed by members of the Continental Congress.

1923 - Vice President Calvin Coolidge becomes president upon the death of President Warren G. Harding. Harding died from a stroke in a San Francisco hotel.

1934 - Adolf Hitler becomes Fuhrer of Germany following the death of Paul von Hindenburg.

1974 - John Dean, counsel to President Richard Nixon, was sentenced to prison for his part in the Watergate coverup. Dean's sentence was reduced, and he was released after four months.

1990 - Iraq invades Kuwait, eventually leading to the Gulf War.

Policy News

Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report
Outdoors Report-- Salt Lake Tribune: Utah wants more people to hunt cougars, but some say losing big cats will pose big problems
images/1000px_Logos/Congressional_News_04.jpgMcAdams, Walorski launch bipartisan Congressional What Works Caucus
 Representatives Ben McAdams (D-UT) and Jackie Walorski (R-IN) launched a new, bipartisan Congressional What Works Caucus to help ensure that federal taxpayer dollars are invested as effectively and efficiently as possible to improve outcomes for children, families and communities nationwide.
images/1000px_Logos/Congressional_News_03.jpgCurtis, Neguse introduce bipartisan legislation to study soil health on public lands
 This week, Representatives John Curtis (R-UT) and Joe Neguse (D-CO), members of the House Natural Resources Committee, introduced legislation to initiate a study on the state of soil health on public lands.
Volunteers needed for the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference
Volunteers are needed for the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference, announced Mayor Jackie Biskupski.

More National Headlines

Wise Words

Finding Elvis

"I have as much chance of becoming Prime Minister as of being decapitated by a frisbee or of finding Elvis." Boris Johnson

Lighter Side

Worst Performance

"Well, after the hearing, Trump said Mueller's performance was, quote, 'one of the worst performances in the history of the country.' And then Stormy Daniels was like, 'Second worst.'" - JIMMY FALLON

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