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Situational awareness - March 20, 2018

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. It's caucus day in Utah! Welcome to Utah's must-read daily political news roundup. 

Mitt Romney talks caucuses. Hatch says firing Mueller would be the "stupidest thing" Trump could do. Congress closing in on a $1.3 trillion spending bill.

Here's a scoop! Gov. Mitt Romney is an aficionado of pancakes. We discussed some of his favorite flapjack places before our interview got rolling (you can listen to the podcast below). Bonus scoop: Ann Romney often makes pancakes from scratch, and her secret ingredient is whipped egg whites. That's the kind of hard-hitting reporting you expect from UtahPolicy.com.

Happy 164th birthday GOP! On this day in 1854, the Republican Party was organized in Ripon, Wisconsin. You don't look a day over 155!

Tick Tock

Do you like podcasts? Give us a download! Listen to our interviews with Utah political newsmakers and "Bernick and Schott on politics" while you're on the go. Hosts Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick have more than 60 years combined experience covering Utah politics, so they bring you knowledge and insight that's unprecedented. You can subscribe using iTunesGoogle Play, and Stitcher.

Got a tip or story idea? Send me an email at bschott@utahpolicy.com.

If you have friends or colleagues who would enjoy receiving this daily news rundown, tell them they can subscribe to our newsletter here.

Here's what's driving the day

Romney speaks

Gov. Mitt Romney discusses his campaign and how he's using a grassroots approach to caucus night [Utah Policy].

Here's the podcast of our interview with Romney wherein we discuss campaigning, Russia, tax cuts and whether he plans to term limit himself if he wins in November [Utah Policy].

Clearing the air

Rep. Steve Handy runs down the work lawmakers did to improve air quality during the 2018 Utah Legislature [Utah Policy].

Heading to the Sweet 16

Here are four more "Political Power" matchups for you to vote on. The most intriguing matchup today is Gov. Gary Herbert vs. his former Lt. Governor Greg Bell. Hit the link and vote [Utah Policy].

Here are Monday's results, including a nailbiter of a matchup that saw Gail Miller squeak past John Dougall a single percentage point [Utah Policy].

Other Utah headlines

National headlines

On this day in history

world trade center utah

Today At Utah Policy

Guest opinion: Mitt Romney's golden opportunity -- To set an example

Because insults sell newspapers and attract audiences, national media want Mitt Romney to be a U.S. Senator who frequently bashes President Donald Trump....

10th Circuit Court rules SB54 is constitutional

Just in time for the biennial Utah caucus meetings, a three-judge panel has upheld a lower court's decision in the Utah GOP's lawsuit against SB54....

More round #2 matchups in our 2018 Utah 'Political Power' bracket

There are some fascinating second-round matchups in today's "Political Power" bracket for you to vote on....

Romney talks caucuses, Trump, and term limits

Gov. Mitt Romney is making a big play this year to get supporters to Tuesday night's caucus meetings. ...

Podcast: Conversation with Mitt Romney

Gov. Mitt Romney discusses his campaign ahead of Tuesday's Utah caucus meetings, why he's using volunteers instead of paid signature-gatherers and how he's engaging potential delegates....

Day #5 of the 2018 Utah 'Political Power' bracket is in the books

Four Utah political figures have punched their ticket to the "Sweet 16" in our Utah "Political Power" bracket....

Guest opinion: Good clean air progress; more needs to be done

When I began my legislative service, I asked one of the senior legislators how he thought I could make a difference? His answer, "Just listen to your constituents, they'll tell you what to do."...

Winter Sports Market to call Salt Lake City home

Organizers of Winter Sports Market and the Governor's Office of Economic Development announced a new three-year partnership that will bring the longest continuously running trade show for specialty winter sports retailers in the United States to Salt Lake City, Utah beginnin...

Poll: Only 1/4 of Utahns say they've seen a bigger paycheck from the Trump tax cuts

Most Utahns say they support the Trump tax cuts passed by Congress at the end of 2017, but nearly half say they haven't noticed the promised increase in their take-home pay....

Vote now in round two of our 'Political Power' bracket challenge!

We're on to round two of the 2018 Utah "Political Power" bracket. We've got four second-round matchups for you to vote on today....

Utah County GOP sanctions Keep My Voice after attack on Republican lawmaker

The Utah County GOP is hitting back at organizers of a ballot initiative to repeal SB54, saying their attack on a sitting Republican lawmaker goes too far....

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Policy News

a2b Fulfillment, Inc. chooses Utah for future expansion
The Governor's Office of Economic Development announced that a2b Fulfillment will expand operations to Ogden, Utah, adding up to 75 new jobs, $12.6 million in new state revenue and an estimated $840,000 in capital investment....

You're invited: Diplomatic luncheon with the Ambassador of Tunisia
World Trade Center Utah, in partnership with the Governor's Office of Economic Development, the Salt Lake Chamber, and the National U.S.-Arab Chamber of Commerce (NUSACC,) is delighted to host a diplomatic luncheon welcoming His Excellency Mr. Fayal Gouia,&nbs...

Fox files 'Legislative update'
Last week our Board of Advisors met and heard from Senator Ann Millner, Representative Mike Schultz, GOED Executive Director Val Hale, and UDOT Executive Director Carlos Braceras to learn more about the recently completed 2018 Legislative Session....

Bethami Dobkin, Ph.D., named 19th president of Westminster College
Westminster College's Board of Trustees has selected Bethami Dobkin, Ph.D., as the 19th president of Westminster College. Dobkin will join Westminster in July with inauguration celebrations planned for the fall....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Editorial: County jails help inmates find new life

New laws to give Utah women easier and less expensive access to birth-control pills and IUDs

PAC with ties to Nancy Pelosi to spend $43 million to help Democrats but leaves Utah's Ben McAdams off the list for now

Only three legislative races are unopposed this year - down from 15 in 2016 as Democrats say Utah GOP infighting boosts candidate recruitment

Big GOP donor accuses state senator of attempted extortion; senator says he tried to aid sexual harassment victim of his accuser

Smith's stores in Utah will stop carrying magazines about 'assault rifles'

Salt Lake County elections director is challenging her boss, Clerk Sherrie Swensen, in a scenario that is becoming a pattern this year

Gov. Herbert signs 71 more bills - including curbs on panhandling, protection for public breastfeeding

Deseret News

Editorial: Trump must communicate clearly to Kim Jong Un what's at stake

What Utah found when surveying students about vape, alcohol use

Sen. Mike Lee says Congress shouldn't bail out 'Obamacare' in spending bill

Extortion accusations fly in ugly Utah GOP fight over controversial election law

Intermountain Healthcare employees brace for more job cuts as Utah's largest employer readies to 'adapt or die'

Political party caucus meetings on tap Tuesday across Utah


Weber County Republicans to pick delegates, key in selecting GOP candidates (Standard-Examiner)

National Headlines

Ex-Obama Campaign Director Drops Bombshell Claim on Facebook: 'They Were on Our Side' (IJR)

Tech backlash: 'Maybe Silicon Valley needs to be taken down to size' (Mercury News)

Ambitious Saudi prince mounts epic US charm offensive (AFP)

More shoppers want customer service from gadgets over humans (Reuters)

Congressman suggests Second Amendment as means of opposing Trump (New York Post)

Putin says will engage with West after record vote win (AFP)

Robert Mueller Has Been Botching Investigations Since The Anthrax Attacks (Federalist)

Bombs in Austin look a lot like terrorism (Dallas Morning News)

Trump adds to legal team after attacks on Mueller (The Hill)

Mississippi bans abortions at 15 weeks, earliest in the nation (CNN)

Trump prepared to hit China with $60 billion in annual tariffs (Washington Post)

Wise Words


"You cannot push any one up a ladder unless he be willing to climb a little himself." Andrew Carnegie

Lighter Side

Toys R Us

"Toys R Us is going out of business. They're closing all 735 of their stores and they're putting Babies R Us up for adoption." Jimmy Kimmel

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