What You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today – December 19, 2013


  • 39 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature
  • 187 days until Utah’s 2014 primary elections
  • 320 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 684 days to the 2015 elections
  • 748 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 1055 days to the 2016 presidential election

Today’s Utah news highlights:

  • Phone records obtained by state investigators link former Attorney General Mark Shurtleff to an alleged bribery probe that has swept up his former “fixer” Tim Lawson [Tribune].
  • The House panel investigating former Attorney General John Swallow plan to make public their findings starting Thursday [Tribune].
  • Lawmakers say there’s little chance of a tax hike during the next legislative session, but legislation addressing air quality will likely be a top priority [Tribune].
  • Utah Democrats are scrambling to find a replacement for retiring Representative Jim Matheson [Daily Herald].
  • The 2014 Utah Transit Authority budget expands service hours without a fare increase [Tribune].
  • Rep. Joel Briscoe proposes allowing local governments to hike sales tax to pay for mass transit [Tribune].
  • A study says Utah needs to build 12 more state liquor stores along the Wasatch Front based on the Legislature’s own formula for calculating the number of stores based on population [Tribune].
  • Proposed changes to the way the NSA operates will likely not affect the agency’s data center in Bluffdale [Tribune].
  • Ads opposing a proposed statewide anti-discrimination law based on sexual orientation are set to air in Utah starting Sunday [Deseret News].

On this day in history:

  • Benjamin Franklin began publishing Poor Richard’s Almanac in 1732
  • Gen. George Washington led his army to Valley Forge, Pennsylvania in 1777
  • A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens was first published in 1843
  • Nelson Rockefeller was sworn in as the 41st vice president of the U.S. in 1974
  • Lawrence Walsh was appointed independent council in investigate the Iran-Contra affair in 1986
  • President Bill Clinton was impeached by the House of Representatives in 1998
  • President George W. Bush ordered an emergency bailout of the U.S. auto industry in 2008