Now that the 2012 Legislative Session has ended, so we asked our Republican and Democratic insiders to let us know who they thought came out as winners and losers this year.
Many decided to single out HB 363, which mandates "abstinence only" sex education as a loser, while quite a few praised legislative leadership for a smooth and non-controversial session.
"Representative Kraig Powell. He seemed to be one of the few republicans willing to stand up against extreme right party rhetoric. He voted for what was right and wrong no matter the consequences."
"The Utah education system, whose only idea to improve the teaching the state's children is to beg for more money. Well, they got it."
"Both legislative bodies - In funding, public education, higher education, health, human services, and public safety."
"Governor Herbert is the big winner with the legislature following his lead on making education the top budget priority."
"Becky Lockhart, who finally grabbed the bucking horse by the reins and showed how it is supposed to be done. No small feat after last year's near-catastrophic session."
"Rep. David Litvack, for figuring out it's time to ride off into the sunset with the Capitol behind him, and watch his kids grow up."
"Legislative leadership (from both parties) who executed a reasoned, productive and dignified session. There were a few crazy moments and bills, but this year was a far cry from the circus-like atmosphere that has sometimes marred Capitol Hill."
"Utah taxpayers, who got a fairly responsible state budget that is balanced. And they only have to eat a small amount of pork, which coincides nicely with the edicts of the Word of Wisdom."
"Eagle Forum, Veterans, citizens who want cleaner air & better economic development, and taxpayers who don't want to waste money on the Lake Powell pipeline."
"House Democrats, who provided some feisty, tightly controlled counterpoints to some spectacular bloviating from the majority party on truly questionable bills."
"Higher Ed employees who finally got a raise (albeit a modest 1%) after four years of frozen salaries and the U of U which received $22 million toward replacing its aging power infrastructure."
"State-employed lawyers. The lawsuits the right wing seeks to file over taking back federal lands will enrich all of them, for years."
"Senator Osmond dominated the session with major pieces of legislation and established himself as a power despite being a freshman."
"Incumbents won by giving nobody a reason not to vote for them."
"Thanks to HB363 winners include ob/gyn doctors and manufacturers of drugs that treat STDs."
"Republicans who voted last year for HB 116 - no discussion in the Legislature this year - clean sailing through the party caucuses?"
"The tens of thousands of Utah kids who have sex without knowing anything about STDs or contraception."
"Senator Osmond - he filled the young up-and-comer leadership gap left by Sen. Liljenquist. He owned the issue of public education this session."
"The winners are the citizens of Utah now that it is finally coming to an end."
"Senate President Waddoups and Speaker Lockhart - Were able to run a smooth and productive session."
"Governor Herbert - Perceived as a strong reasonable voice throughout the session."
"Greg Hughes is a winner. He has really evolved from the pugilist activist he started off as a young legislator into a thoughtful statesman willing to work on good sound policy issues with all parties and with both sides of the aisle. His work a couple of years ago on removing the archaic alcohol club laws with Governor Huntsman, the convention and restaurant industries, the LDS church, MADD, and Democrats and Republicans alike, was a real turning point for him."
"Governor Herbert, whose spine has been ripped out by legislative leadership and mounted on their bathroom wall as a place to hang toothbrushes."
"The media because they could not find or generate much controversy."
"The Democratic messaging machine, which was pithy, occasionally funny, based on warm milk ideas and executed such that the party needs to be gifted a dictionary so they can look up the definition of 'timely.'"
"The Legislature's web site, whose motto was "suck early, suck often" after years of being the most useful tool for keeping up with state government. Yes, it got better, but only in the sense that getting kicked in the groin once is better than getting kicked in the groin twice."
"Teenagers. Never mind about all that sex ed talk in the schools. Let 'em all get pregnant at 14. That'll teach 'em."
"The press, which whined about a boring session for 7 weeks despite having sex ed, abortion, gay rights, immigration, intra-party donnybrooks, and a bristling showdown between House and Senate leaders over autistic kids staring them right in their blank faces."
"The Police State -- Which took a beating on questionable programs like DUI checkpoints and useless programs like safety inspections."
"All women of all ages. The 72-hour waiting period for women seeking abortions is a gross government intrusion into a personal decision, and a slap in the face of established Supreme Court precedent to uphold women's right to choose."
"The biggest losers are Utah teens who will be denied factual sex education and parents who want this information for their kids."
"Senator Stephenson - Had to rework a number of pieces of legislation to obtain passages. The house stood up to him and held key pieces hostage unless he reworked them to their satisfaction. He is losing his vice grip on education to Senator Osmond."
"Rep. Chris Herrod whose childish antics and temper tantrums diminished the body as a whole."
"Those who wanted 'common sense' legislation, students and parents who want sex ed information, Billboard industry, cities & schools who continue to be micromanaged by the Legislature."
"Prospective college students when the legislature didn't sufficiently fund the increased number of students eligible for Regents scholarships, resulting in a decrease in the amount of the scholarship and the U of U which only received $22 of the $100 million needed to replace its aging infrastructure."
"Rep. Bill Wright. Sponsored sex-ed legislation that enraged an entire state."
"Members of the public who wanted changes in Utah's liquor laws, students and parents who can't take a reasonable sex education class, coyotes and Medicaid recipients."
"Those who have uptight parents or who don't have an internet connection to figure out sex for themselves."
"The people of Utah seem to always lose in the legislature. The message bills and the damage to our education professionals is staggering. I have never been able to figure out why the people of this beautiful state vote against themselves year after year."
"The Tea Party and right-wing Republican delegates. The legislature ignored their demands to repeal HB116, immigration reform."
"The highway patrolmen who wrote tens dozens of parking tickets for violations on and around the Capitol."
"Parents - No longer have a choice to have health education professionals provide factual information on sex education."
"Gubernatorial challengers - hopes for a slip up from the Governor's office that never came to fruition."
Respondents include -
Fred Adams, Stuart Adams, Jess Agraz, Scott Anderson, Patrice Arent, Bruce Baird, Tom Barberi, Heather Barney, Steve Barth, Jeff Bell, Tom Berggren, Mike Bertelsen, Ron Bigelow, Rob Bishop, Laura Black, Jim Bradley, Ralph Brown, Ken Bullock, Chris Bleak, Curt Bramble, Ralph Brown, Aaron Browning, Dave Buhler, Ken Bullock, Ric Cantrell, Maura Carabello, Rebecca Chavez-Houck, Kay Christensen, David Clark, Thomas Clay, Peter Corroon, Fred Cox, Lew Cramer, Gene Davis, Richard Davis, Brad Daw, Alan Dayton, Margaret Dayton, Mike Deaver, Brad, Dee, Joseph Demma, John Dougall, Randy Dryer, Donald Dunn, Becky Edwards, Scott Ericson, Jessica Fawson, Janice Fisher, Wendy Fisher, Lorie Fowlke, Ronald Fox, Jordan Garn, Luke Garrott, Dave Gessel, Natalie Gochnour, Robert Grow, Karen Hale, David Hansen, Neil Hansen, Joe Hatch, Jeff Hartley, Deidre Henderson, Lyle Hillyard, Randy Horiuchi, Ben Horsley, Bruce Hough, Scott Howell, Miriam Hyde, Allison Isom, Eric Jergensen, Mike Jerman, Roger Johnson, Michael Jolley, Gordon Jones, Leslie Jones, Kirk Jowers, Brian King, Scott Konopasek, Chris Kyler, Fred Lampropoulos, Douglas Larson, David Litvack, Larry Lunt, Matt Lyon, Ben McAdams, Gayle McKeachnie, JT Martin, Jason Mathis, Karen Mayne, Derek Miller, Rob Miller, Ethan Millard, Brett Millburn, Karen Morgan, Mike Mower, Holly Mullen, Wayne Niederhauser, Mike Noel, Ralph Okerlund, James Olsen, Val Oveson, Scott Parson, Kelly Patterson, Frank Pignanelli, Jason Powers, Joe Pyrah, Mike Reberg, Jill Remington Love, Lauren Richards, Holly Richardson, Robin Riggs, James Roberts, Luz Robles, Ross Romero, Don Savage, Bryan Schott, Jay Seegmiller, Patrick Shea, Randy Shumway, Soren Simonsen, Jeremy Slaughter, Carol Spackman-Moss, Howard Stephenson, Mike Styler, Juliette Tennert, Gary Thorup, Kevin Van Tassell, Royce Van Tassel, Michael Waddoups, Chuck Warren, Christine Watkins, LaVarr Webb, Todd Weiler, Alan West, Ted Wilson, Carl Wimmer, Mike Winder, Thomas Wright