Morning must reads for Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 52nd day of the year. There are 313 days remaining in 2017.

Lawmakers have more money to spend. Sen. Mike Lee sees opportunity in Donald Trump’s presidency. Driver’s licenses could get more expensive.

The clock:

  • 16 days until the final day of the 2017 Utah Legislature (3/9/2017)
  • 259 days until the 2017 municipal elections (11/7/2017)
  • 335 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)
  • 380 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)
  • 624 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1351 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Here are the stories making news in politics this morning:

  • Utah lawmakers got a nice little surprise last week when revenue estimates gave them $100 million more to spend this year [Utah Policy].
  • Our “Political Insiders” weigh in on Rep. Jason Chaffetz‘s claim that “paid protesters” were to blame for the disruptions at his town hall meeting. The Republicans who responded believe him while Democrats and our readers say he’s pushing “alternative facts” [Utah Policy].
  • Jordan Garn pens an open letter to the Outdoor Retailers Show from Utah. TL:DR Utah is tired of being taken advantage of [Utah Policy].
  • Legislators are mulling a plan to hike fees for driver’s licenses [Utah Policy].
  • Rep. Steve Eliason wants to set up a process to allow for the creation of State Monuments on public lands in Utah [Utah Policy].
  • Sen. Howard Stephenson wants to make it a felony to post personal information online if it’s used to harass someone [Utah Policy].
  • Debate on a bill that would remove partisan requirements for the membership on some state boards and commissions got personal on the Senate floor, which drew a rebuke from Senate President Wayne Niederhauser [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  • Lobbyists on Capitol Hill often invite lawmakers to pricey dinners and events that fall outside of the state’s reporting laws [Associated Press].
  • Sen. Mike Lee says Republicans can take advantage of Donald Trump‘s presidency to push conservative policies in Washington [Tribune].
  • President Donald Trump picks Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster as his new national security adviser [New York Times].
  • Breitbart editor and neo-Nazi provocateur Milo Yiannopoulos has been uninvited from a speaking gig at CPAC and had his book deal yanked after videos surfaced of him defending pedophilia [Washington Post].
  • President Donald Trump‘s staffers don’t want to admit that he spends a lot of time golfing, especially after he repeatedly slammed Barack Obama for hitting the links during the campaign [Politico].

On this day in history:

  • 1885 – The Washington Monument was dedicated in Washington.
  • 1953 – Francis Crick and James D. Watson discovered the double-helix structure of the DNA molecule.
  • 1965 – Black Muslim leader Malcolm X was assassinated at a rally in New York.
  • 1972 – Richard Nixon became the first U.S. president to visit the People’s Republic of China.
  • 1988 – TV evangelist Jimmy Swaggart tearfully confessed to his congregation in Baton Rouge, La., that he was guilty of an unspecified sin, and said he was leaving the pulpit temporarily. (Reports linked Swaggart to a prostitute.)