Citing the critical need for unity, civility, and reasoned discussion in the public arena, a group of civic-minded and politically experienced Utah citizens announced the
formation of the United Utah Party on Monday, May 22, 2017.
“The existing parties created the existing problems by becoming co-opted by extreme views on both sides,” said Richard Davis, who serves as the chair of the United Utah Party. “It is time for a political party that will represent the people of Utah and not merely the views of a few.” Dr. Davis is a political science professor at Brigham Young University. He previously served as a county chair of the Utah Democratic Party.
“The political landscape has shifted dramatically since this last election,” said Jim Bennett, Executive Director of the United Utah Party and son of former Utah Republican Senator Bob Bennett. “Both Republicans and Democrats in Utah are increasingly unhappy with their choices, and they are looking for a reasonable alternative. The United Utah Party is that alternative.” Mr. Bennett has managed a number of Utah political campaigns and served five times as a delegate to the Utah State Republican Convention.
Davis noted strong interest in this new e ort, particularly among those who no longer feel at home in the two major parties. “People are eager to bridge the divide,” he said. “United Utah will give them candidates they can vote for instead of having to choose between two undesirable options.”
The United Utah Party is collecting the 2,000 signatures necessary to be recognized by the state as a registered political party in Utah. They believe they will be able to complete signature gathering in time to participate in the special election to replace Rep. Jason Chaffetz, who is stepping down at the end of next month. However, Bennett pointed out that while the special election presents an opportunity for the United Utah Party, it is not the party’s sole focus.
“This party has been in the works for quite some time,” Bennett said, “ and the timing of this election was not originally part of the plan. While we intend to have a candidate in this race, we also intend to continue our efforts beyond this one election. We’re in it for the long haul.”
The United Utah Party is online and accepting support at unitedutah.org, on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/unitedutahparty and on Twitter as @unitedutahparty.