Morning must reads for Thursday, June 15, 2017

Good Thursday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 166th day of the year. There are 198 days remaining in 2017. Today is the 147th day of Donald Trump’s presidency.

Utahns say how a candidate gets on the ballot will not affect their vote. Utah Democrats are tired of the negative campaigning in the race for new party chair. Robert Mueller is reportedly investigating President Trump for obstruction of justice. 

The clock:

  • 2 days until the Utah Republican 3rd District nominating convention at Timpview High School (6/17/2017).

  • 2 days until the Utah Democratic State Convention at Weber State University (6/17/2017)

  • 61 days until the 2017 Utah primary election (8/15/2017)

  • 145 days until the 2017 election (11/7/2017)

  • 221 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)

  • 266 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)

  • 509 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)

  • 1,238 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Today’s political TL; DR –

  • NEW POLL: Most Utahns say how a candidate got on the ballot doesn’t matter and won’t affect their vote [Utah Policy].
  • Some Utah Democratic delegates have grown so weary of the “nasty” campaign for party chair that they’re mulling an effort to nominate someone other than the current field of candidates from the convention floor. Other delegates say they will just stay home from Saturday’s convention [Utah Policy].
  • Rep. Rob Bishop says he’s disappointed that Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke didn’t recommend the complete rescission of the Bears Ears National Monument [Utah Policy].
  • Utah members of Congress react to the news a gunman opened fire on Republican members of the House during a baseball practice on Wednesday morning. Rep. Jason Chaffetz says he has been the target of several death threats in recent months [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Embattled Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott hasn’t made a payment on a home loan since last July and is now in danger of losing his home [Deseret News].
  • Sen. Mike Lee cast one of two votes against a measure to impose sanctions on Russia for interfering in the 2016 election [Tribune].
  • The Utah Transit Authority will consider a proposed “Taxpayers’ Bill of Rights” in an effort to clean up the embattled agency’s image [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • A state task force will study ways to overhaul the Utah Transit Authority. Some of the ideas include a new state agency to oversee transit [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Utah’s efforts to study the efficacy of medical marijuana before moving forward with any sort of legalization effort could take years to finish [Associated Press].
  • Utah’s congressional delegation is urging President Donald Trump to speed up the approval of the proposed Lake Powell Pipeline [Tribune].
  • The Sundance Film Festival delivered more than $151 million in economic impact to the state this year [Utah Policy, Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Utah maintains its AAA credit rating from several financial rating services [Utah Policy].

National headlines:

  • Uh oh! Special counsel Robert Mueller wants to interview senior intelligence officials as part of an expanding investigation into whether President Donald Trump attempted to obstruct justice [Washington Post].
  • The Senate Judiciary Committee plans to open their own investigation into the circumstances surrounding President Donald Trump‘s decision to fire FBI Director James Comey [Wall Street Journal].
  • The Senate voted almost unanimously to keep President Donald Trump from lifting sanctions on Russia for meddling in the 2016 presidential election [New York Times].
  • The Supreme Court will soon decide whether to lift a lower court’s injunction that kept President Trump’s travel ban from taking effect [The Hill].
  • House Majority Whip Steve Scalise remains in critical condition following an attack by a gunman who opened fire on a group of Congressional Republicans holding an early-morning baseball practice [Politico].
  • House members raised concerns about inadequate security during a briefing a few hours after Rep. Scalise was shot [USA Today].
  • The National Security Agency says the North Korean government was behind the WannaCry computer attacks last month. The cyber attack was designed to raise money for the North Korean regime but failed [Washington Post].
  • A new piece of malware dubbed “Crash Override” or “Industroyer” could be a major threat to the power grid in the United States [The Hill].
  • Fox News is dropping their “Fair & Balanced” slogan in favor of a new tagline, “Most Watched. Most Trusted” [New York Magazine].
  • NBC’s Megyn Kelly is under fire from colleagues and advertisers for her interview with conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, which is set to air this week [New York Times].

On this day in history:

  • 1215 – England’s King John put his seal to the Magna Carta at Runnymede, granting his barons more liberty.
  • 1775 – George Washington was appointed head of the Continental Army.
  • 1864 – Secretary of War Edwin M. Stanton signed an order establishing a military burial ground, which became Arlington National Cemetery.
  • 1992 – Vice President Dan Quayle erroneously instructed a Trenton, N.J., elementary school student to spell potato as “potatoe” during a spelling bee.
  • 1995 – During his murder trial, O.J. Simpson struggled to don a pair of gloves that prosecutors said were worn by the killer of Simpson’s ex-wife, Nicole, and her friend, Ronald Goldman.