Morning must reads for Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 199th day of the year. There are 166 days remaining in 2017.

Obamacare repeal collapses. Lawmakers won’t make changes to Utah’s new DUI law until next year. Wilson jumps in the race to challenge Hatch in 2018.

The clock:

  • 7 days until ballots for the August primary are mailed to voters (7/25/2017)
  • 28 days until the 2017 Utah primary election (8/15/2017)
  • 112 days until the 2017 election (11/7/2017)
  • 188 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)
  • 233 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)
  • 476 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1,204 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Today’s political TL; DR –

  • Sen. Mike Lee says he cannot support the current GOP health care proposal, meaning the bill is dead for now [Utah Policy, Deseret News, Tribune].
  • SCOOP: There probably won’t be a special session to address changes to Utah’s new DUI law. Lawmakers need some time to “cool off” after a series of controversial ads hammering the new law took aim at legislators [Utah Policy].
  • Democrat Jenny Wilson officially jumps into next year’s U.S. Senate race [Utah Policy].
  • Provo Mayor John Curtis is launching his first television ads ahead of the August GOP primary election [Deseret News].
  • Former Rep. Chris Herrod, who is running to replace Jason Chaffetz in Congress, says he is opposed to the special counsel investigation into Russia’s role in the 2016 election [Deseret News].
  • The Utah Transit Authority says their ridership numbers are dropping, even though the agency has been doing well in holding down operating costs [Tribune].
  • Utah County’s population is projected to explode in the next 50 years, becoming almost as populous as Salt Lake County by 2065 [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Gov. Gary Herbert kicks his initiative to boost job creation in the rural areas of the state [Deseret News].
  • The federal trial for developer Terry Diehl, who is accused of bankruptcy fraud, has been moved to November [Tribune].
  • The Road Home shelter is no longer allowing families at its downtown Salt Lake City location [Tribune].
  • Should charter schools be allowed to use eminent domain to seize property? Lawmakers are wrestling with that issue [Deseret News].
  • LaVarr Webb says he’s worried about what the national debt and out of control spending will leave for his grandchildren [Utah Policy].
  • Roger Stone, a longtime confidant of President Donald Trump, says Cliven Bundy and his sons should be pardoned for their role in a 2014 standoff with federal authorities at their ranch in Nevada [Utah Policy].

National headlines:

  • Senate Republicans are scrambling after their effort to repeal and replace Obamacare collapses [Politico].
  • President Donald Trump was absolutely blindsided by the failure of the GOP health care measure on Tuesday night. He was hosting a dinner for some Republican Senators to try and win support for the bill when news broke that two other Republicans, including Sen. Mike Lee, would not back the measure. The president had no indication those defections were coming [Politico].
  • Tuesday morning Trump tweeted that the health care bill failed because of Democrats and “a few Republicans” [The Hill].
  • The failure of the GOP repeal and replace measure illustrates a political truism – entitlements are nearly impossible to take away once they’re given [New York Times].
  • As President Donald Trump approaches the six-month mark in office, what has he accomplished? An analysis shows not much [New York Times].
  • Finally, here’s some polling data that President Trump will like. Even though his approval is at near-historic lows, Hillary Clinton is even less popular [Bloomberg].
  • Despite hammering the Iran nuclear deal during the 2016 campaign, he reluctantly agreed to recertify that Iran is abiding by the terms of the agreement [New York Times].
  • The former campaign managers for Mitt Romney and Hillary Clinton are heading a new initiative to prevent Russian meddling in future elections [Washington Post].
  • Even though grade point averages are rising in American high schools, SAT scores are not going up [USA Today].

On this day in history:

  • 1536 – Parliament passed an act declaring the authority of the pope void in England.
  • 1872 – Britain enacted voting by secret ballot.
  • 1969 – A car driven by Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., plunged off a bridge on Chappaquiddick Island near Martha’s Vineyard. His passenger, 28-year-old Mary Jo Kopechne, died.