What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today – December 17, 2013


  • 41 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature
  • 189 days until Utah’s 2014 primary elections
  • 322 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 686 days to the 2015 elections
  • 750 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 1057 days to the 2016 presidential election

On this day in history:

  • France recognized American independence in 1777
  • Simon Bolivar died in Columbia in 1830
  • The Wright brothers made the first flight at Kitty Hawk, N.C. in 1903
  • The U.S. Army ended it’s policy of holding Japanese-Americans in internment camps in 1944
  • The U.S. Air Force terminated it’s investigation into UFO’s, labeled “Project Blue Book,” in 1969
  • The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was signed by the U.S., Canada and Mexico in 1992
  • North Korean leader Kim Jong Il died in 2011

Today’s Utah news highlights:

  • Ick! Air quality in Northern Utah is among the worst in the nation today [Daily Herald].
  • Gov. Gary Herbert met with all three candidates to replace John Swallow as Attorney General. He says he hopes to make a decision by Christmas [Tribune].
  • Sen. Orrin Hatch says he will back a compromise budget deal currently under consideration in Congress [Tribune].
  • The LDS Church releases an essay on polygamy following a federal judge’s ruling that parts of Utah’s laws prohibiting the practice are unconstitutional [Tribune].
  • Social conservatives blast the polygamy ruling, saying it’s a serious threat to the institution of marriage [KSL].
  • Many members of Congress, including Utah’s Jim Matheson, are paying more for health insurance because of Obamacare [Tribune].
  • Sen. Steve Urquhart says the fate of his proposed statewide non-discrimination legislation may hinge on what the LDS Church says, or doesn’t say, about the measure [Standard-Examiner].
  • The Utah Education Association fires lobbyist and former legislator Kory Holdaway [Deseret News].
  • The University of Utah is exploring the use of free online textbooks for classes [Tribune].
  • Further sequestration budget cuts could hit Utah housing programs hard next year [Standard-Examiner].
  • A former inspector for the Heber Valley Railroad alleges he was fired because of his complaints about safety issues to inspectors [Tribune].