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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 lwebb@utahpolicy.com,.

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Situational Awareness - September 10, 2020

Good Thursday morning. Please find a better backdrop for your Zoom calls than your unmade bed and pile of dirty underwear.

This week's Trivia Contest winner

David Schneider, a Deseret News editor, correctly identified Charles "Chic" Bullen as the only person to be elected to the Utah House of Representatives on a write-in vote. Other readers also got the answer right, but Dave was first. There was some dispute among respondents whether Bullen's nickname is spelled Chick or Chic. Maybe that should be another trivia question. Doug Foxley, who posed the question, noted that Bullen defeated Frank Gunnell, who had been involved in a bit of a scandal, for the House seat. Bullen later won his cousin's (Reed Bullen) Senate seat when Reed declined to run for a 6th term.

Watch for a new trivia question on Monday.


14 days to the 1st Congressional District debate (9/24/2020)
18 days to the Utah gubernatorial debate (9/28/2020)
27 days to the Vice Presidential debate at the University of Utah (10/07/2020)
32 days to the 4th Congressional District debate (10/12/2020)
33 days to the day mail-in ballots can begin to be sent out (10/13/2020)
35 days to the 3rd Congressional District debate (10/15/2020)
39 days to the 2nd Congressional District debate (10/19/2020)
41 days to the Utah Attorney General debate (10/21/2020)
52 days to the 2020 election (11/3/2020)
132 days to inauguration day (01/20/2021)
138 days to the start of the 2021 Utah Legislature (1/25/2021)

Today At Utah Policy

New generation taking over Utah politics . . . good luck!
By LaVarr Webb
With the retirement of Gov. Gary Herbert and Congressman Rob Bishop early next year, Utah's top political leadership is poised to become much younger. The Baby Boom generation of political leadership is slowly fading away, and young leaders are stepping up. Perhaps it's about time. Baby Boomers have dominated the political stage for many years. It's time for the old codgers (like me) to give some younger folks a chance.
images/mugs-300/Gary_Herbert_02.jpgGov. Herbert, state leaders to share COVID-19 plan for coming months
By Staff
An important COVID-19 briefing will be held Thursday featuring Gov. Gary Herbert and other key leaders. In anticipation of school re-openings, autumn, and flu season, Utah's Unified Command COVID-19 Response Team has created target goals and metrics for measuring the fight against coronavirus. Health and Economic Response Leads will take a deep dive through these metrics at 10:30 a.m. Thursday, to be followed by a press conference at 11:45 a.m.
images/mugs-300/LaVarr_Webb.jpgWebb's Wrap: Opinion briefs - Two Utah brothers on Trump's Supreme Court list . . . Newspaper crisis continues . . . Social media dumpster fire
By LaVarr Webb
Sibling rivalry? It is quite unique that two Utah brothers, Sen. Mike Lee and Utah Supreme Court Justice Thomas Lee, have twice made Pres. Trump's list of possible U.S. Supreme Court nominees if he wins a second term and a spot comes open (which is likely). The question arises: Which brother would make the best high court justice? Some smart lawyers tell me that Thomas has the best legal mind. But Mike, who has no judicial experience except as a young clerk, knows Washington politics and might be more easily confirmed. Either one would be a conservative justice and constitutional originalist. They would avoid making laws from the bench. See more at the Deseret News and the Tribune.

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Policy News

images/Logos/Utah_Foundation_Logo.jpgSurvey: When it comes to new public investments, education spending tops voters' list
Utah Foundation has released the third in a series of Utah Priorities Project briefs looking at Utah voters' top concerns. Kindergarten through 12th grade education ranked third in the summer survey. Concern is partly driven by the economic needs of working parents, health risks and educational challenges. K-12 education was most important for voters with children in school and women
Meet the Salt Lake County mayoral candidates
The Salt Lake Chamber invites you to join a Meet the Candidates Virtual Forum with the Salt Lake County mayoral candidates. The discussion will focus on the long-term economic vision and strategies for the county, business policy priorities, as well as the immediate economic recovery from COVID-19. The forum will be held Tuesday, September 15, 4-5 p.m. To register click HERE.
Governor issues executive order declaring a state of emergency due to severe weather
Gov. Gary R. Herbert on Wednesday issued an executive order declaring a state of emergency in response to the severe windstorm that passed through Utah Monday night and Tuesday morning. "This emergency has impacted residents in several counties. We have seen damage to homes, to critical infrastructures and to the environment," Gov. Herbert said. "Issuing this declaration expedites the use of state resources and federal resources, as they are needed. I am impressed by all the Utahns who are stepping up to clear debris from their homes and neighborhoods. We stand together in our efforts to clean up, rebuild and move forward." View the Executive Order here.
Hatch Foundation unveils new scholarship program
The Orrin G. Hatch Foundation has unveiled the Orrin G. Hatch Scholars Program-a new education initiative that seeks to cultivate the next generation of public leaders by awarding scholarships to students from across the country who demonstrate academic excellence, personal integrity, and a commitment to civic service. After announcing that undergraduates will be able to apply for the Hatch Scholars Program starting this week, Hatch Foundation Executive Director Matt Sandgren made the following statement:
Romney seeks comprehensive effort to strengthen COVID-19 vaccine confidence
WASHINGTON-At a Health Committee hearing Wednesday U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) spoke with Surgeon General VADM Dr. Jerome Adams and NIH Director Dr. Francis Collins about the need for a comprehensive effort to increase the confidence Americans have in safe vaccines. A partial transcript can be found below and full video of the exchange can be found here.
Park City, Utah Experiences 'Land Rush' as Covid-19 Pandemic Brings a Wave of Transplants From Dense Cities
Affluent families from urban areas seek a lockdown-free lifestyle with over 22% of record home sales occurring in the exclusive Promontory community As the pandemic prompts dramatic changes for millions of Americans, Park City, Utah has become one of the leading choices for affluent families seeking to relocate from cities in hopes of making the best of anxious times with a lifestyle without lockdown. The mountain resort town is an obvious option due to its abundant outdoor recreation and cultural offerings, proximity to Salt Lake City International Airport for when travel resumes, and the conveniences of a nearby urban center that no other comparable resort town boasts.



(From History.com)

1776 - Nathan Hale, 21 years old, volunteers to spy behind British lines after General George Washington asks for a volunteer for the dangerous mission to gather intelligence before the coming battle of Harlem Heights. He is later captured and hanged by the British on Sept. 22, 1776.

1813 - U.S. Captain Oliver Hazard Perry leads a fleet of nine American ships to victory over a squadron of six British warships at the Battle of Lake Erie during the War of 1812. It is the first unqualified defeat of a British naval squadron in history.

1897 - The world's first drunk driving arrest is made. A 25-year-old London taxi driver named George Smith is arrested for driving under the influence. He slammed his cab into a building and was fined 25 shillings.

1977 - The guillotine falls silent as Hamida Djandoubi, a Tunisian immigrant convicted of murder, becomes the last person executed by guillotine at a Marseille, France, prison.

Wise Words

Good Deeds: "It takes many good deeds to build a good reputation, and only one bad one to lose it." Benjamin Franklin

Lighter Side

Only In Utah: Iceberg

Iceberg: An old-fashioned drive in restaurant with the best shakes in the state. They have fry sauce, too.  Only In Your State 

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