Morning must reads for Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Good Wednesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 109th day of the year. There are 256 days remaining in 2017.

Kathryn Allen’s massive financial haul is more than every other challenger Jason Chaffetz has faced combined. McMullin still owes big bucks for his failed presidential campaign. Bill O’Reilly is on his way out at Fox News Channel.

The clock:

  • 31 days until the Utah Republican State Convention (5/20/2017)
  • 59 days until the Utah Democratic State Convention at Weber State University (6/17/2017)
  • 202 days until the 2017 municipal elections (11/7/2017)
  • 278 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)
  • 323 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)
  • 566 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1,294 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Today’s political TL; DR – 

  • Democrat Kathryn Allen has raised a boatload of money for her challenge to Rep. Jason Chaffetz next year. In fact, she has already raised more money than every other challenger Chaffetz has faced combined [Utah Policy].
  • A new study shows Americans trust Democrats more than Republicans to handle many domestic issues better [Utah Policy].
  • There’s more speculation about Sen. Orrin Hatch‘s political future [Roll Call].
  • Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams promises that he and Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski will come up with a plan to address the homeless crisis in downtown Salt Lake [Deseret News].
  • Evan McMullin still owes about $670,000 for his failed 2016 presidential bid [Tribune].
  • Rep. Jason Chaffetz recounts his visit to the Demilitarized Zone between North Korea and South Korea [Tribune].
  • Utah lawmakers will not try to override Gov. Gary Herbert‘s veto of a bill that eliminated partisan membership requirements for many state boards and commissions [Associated Press].
  • Turmoil at the Huntsman Cancer Institute. The University of Utah ousts a top researcher from the facility while Jon Huntsman Sr. calls the move a “power grab” by the University [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • The Utah ACLU files suit against the Trump administration asking for documents related to President Trump’s executive order banning travel for people from seven Muslim-majority countries [Tribune].
  • The criminal probe into ex-Utah Transit Authority board member Terry Diehl may be expanding according to some new subpoenas issued in the case [Tribune].
  • Democrat Jon Ossoff fails to get more than 50% of the vote in Tuesday’s special election to fill a traditionally Republican Congressional seat in Georgia. He now heads to a June runoff against Republican Karen Handel [Politico].
  • Multiple reports say Fox News Channel is preparing to cut ties with Bill O’Reilly who is at the center of a sexual-harassment scandal [Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, New York Times].
  • How do you lose an aircraft carrier? Last week, President Donald Trump said the USS Carl Vinson was on the way toward North Korea as tensions between that country and the U.S. were increasing. As it turns out, the aircraft carrier was actually thousands of miles away off the coast of Austrailia [New York Times].
  • President Donald Trump vows to keep North Korea from developing a nuclear-tipped missile that could reach the U.S. [Bloomberg]. Vice President Mike Pence also rattles sabers toward North Korea, saying the U.S. would make an “overwhelming” response to the use of nuclear weapons [Associated Press].
  • The federal government will shut down next week if Congress can’t pass a new spending bill. Speaker Paul Ryan may have to rely on help from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi to get a spending deal in place [Bloomberg]. Democrats are demanding that ObamaCare subsidies be part of any spending deal, which is complicating efforts to avoid a shutdown [The Hill].
  • Campaign donations are soaring for the most vulnerable Democratic U.S. Senators up for re-election in 2018 [USA Today].

On this day in history:

  • 1775 – The American Revolutionary War began with the battles of Lexington and Concord.
  • 1933 – The United States went off the gold standard.
  • 1993 – A 51-day siege at the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas, ended when fire destroyed the structure after federal agents smashed their way in. Dozens of people, including sect leader David Koresh, were killed.
  • 1995 – A truck bomb exploded outside the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City, killing 168 people and injuring 500. (Timothy McVeigh was later convicted of federal murder charges and executed.)