Morning Must Reads for Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 328th day of the year. There are 38 days left in 2016.

LaVar Christensen keeps his Utah House seat by the thinnest of margins. Donald Trump fills another cabinet slot. Trump disavows the racist alt-right movement.

The clock:

  • 26 days until the Electoral College meets to cast their votes for president and vice president (12/19/2016)
  • 58 days until Donald Trump is inaugurated as the 45th President (1/20/2017)
  • 61 days until the first day of the 2017 Utah Legislature (1/23/2017)
  • 106 days until the final day of the 2017 Utah Legislature (3/9/2017)
  • 349 days until the 2017 municipal elections (11/7/2017)
  • 713 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)

Ten talking points for Wednesday:

  1. Rep. LaVar Christensen retains his seat in the Utah House by a razor-thin three-vote margin. There will be a recount. Democrats end up with a net gain of one seat in the Legislature following the final vote totals [Utah Policy, Tribune, Deseret News].
  2. What does President-Elect Donald Trump‘s vow to scrap the Trans-Pacific Partnership mean for Utah’s international trade? Check out our interview with Derek Miller from the World Trade Center Utah [Utah Policy].
  3. Cabinet Picks: Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is moving closer to becoming Donald Trump‘s selection as Secretary of State [Utah Policy]. Trump picks South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley to be Ambassador to the United Nations [CNN]. Former Democratic Rep. Harold Ford, Jr. is rapidly rising to the top of Trump’s list for Secretary of Transportation [Politico]. Dr. Ben Carson is reportedly under consideration to head up Housing and Urban Development [CBS News].
  4. Donald Trump has flip-flopped on 15 campaign promises in the last 15 days [Politico].
  5. President-elect Trump meets journalists and executives at the New York Times [Wall Street Journal]. During that meeting, Trump disavowed the racist alt-right movement saying he doesn’t “want to energize the group” [BuzzFeed]. 
  6. Donald Trump is giving more indications he does not intend to untangle himself from his vast business empire before taking office in January [Wall Street Journal]. Trump seemingly suggests there would be no conflict of interest with his business entities simply because he would be the president [Politico]. Liberals say an obscure line in the Constitution would be enough to sink Trump if he does not divest himself from his businesses [Politico].
  7. Voter turnout in some Utah counties was near record levels. Overall turnout in 2016 slightly exceeded 2012 levels when Mitt Romney was on the ballot [Deseret News].
  8. Utah’s high school graduation rate rises to 85% [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  9. More than 48 million Americans are expected to hit the road for Thanksgiving this year [CBS News]. 53% of Americans say they don’t plan to discuss politics at the Thanksgiving table [Huffington Post].
  10. Congratulations to Matt Canham and Robert Gehrke from the Salt Lake Tribune on a pair of well-deserved promotions. Canham becomes managing editor of the paper while Gehrke will write a political column [Tribune].

On this day in history:

  • 1889 – The jukebox made its debut, at the Palais Royale Saloon in San Francisco.
  • 1954 – The Dow Jones industrial average finally surpassed it’s pre-crash high – 25 years after Black Tuesday – when it closed at 382.74.