Daily Briefing 11-10-17

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 314th day of the year. There are 51 days remaining in 2017.

The clock:

  • 73 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)
  • 118 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)
  • 361 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1,089 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Today’s political TL; DR –

  • Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott help you make sense of what happened this week in Utah politics [Utah Policy]. Here’s a podcast if you prefer [Utah Policy].
  • Gov. Gary Herbert disputes a report that he’s reached a deal with lawmakers to release a legal opinion on the procedure for the 3rd CD special election. Legislative leaders say Herbert wants assurances they won’t sue him once the opinion is made public [Utah Policy].
  • Bob Bernick says changing the Count My Vote ballot initiative to include the current dual-track system puts opponents of the proposal in a tough spot [Utah Policy].
  • Updated election results confirm John Curtis won Tuesday’s special election to fill Utah’s vacant seat in Congress [Deseret News].
  • Sen. Orrin Hatch takes the wraps off his plan to overhaul the nation’s tax code [Deseret News].
  • Gov. Gary Herbert says he expects a “grand compromise” when President Donald Trump announces his plan for reducing the size of Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monuments [Tribune].
  • Some election-night ties have been broken with a new round of vote totals released Thursday [Tribune].
  • Representative-elect John Curtis looks back on his time as Provo Mayor as he readies to head to Washington to take a seat in Congress [Daily Herald].
  • The third phase of Operation Rio Grande, which will focus on providing jobs for the homeless, gets underway [Utah PolicyDeseret NewsTribune].
  • Gov. Gary Herbert says he’s pleased organizers of the Count My Vote initiative have changed their proposal to include the current dual-track path to the ballot [Deseret News].

National headlines:

  • ROMNEY WATCHMitt Romney has been meeting with Utah power brokers and political donors as he’s getting closer to launching a run for U.S. Senate next year [Politico].
  • BOMBSHELL! A woman says Alabama GOP Senate nominee Roy Moore initiated a sexual encounter with her when she was 14 and he was 32. Two other women say Moore pursued them when they were 16 and 18 years-old around the same time. Moore has denied the allegations [Washington Post]. 
    • Some Republicans are calling for Moore to drop out of the U.S. Senate race because of the allegations, but some absentee ballots have already been sent to voters, so there are no options for replacing him on the ballot [Washington Post]. Moore’s campaign sent out a fundraising email in response to the allegations [Politico].
    • Former White House strategist Steve Bannon compared the allegations against Moore to the release of the “Access Hollywood” tapes just before the 2016 election [CBS News].
  • The U.S. Senate takes the wraps off their tax reform proposal. The Senate version puts a one-year delay for cutting the corporate tax rate. It also keeps some middle-class tax breaks that were left out of the House version [New York Times].
  • President Trump talks trade in Vietnam on the latest leg of his visit to Asia. Trump did not meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin during the visit because of scheduling conflicts [Washington Post].
  • Keith Schiller, President Trump’s longtime bodyguard, told investigators probing Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election that a Russian once offered to “send five women” to Trump’s hotel room in Moscow after a business meeting. Schiller says Trump declined the offer [NBC News].
  • The research firm that prepared a dossier on President Trump’s alleged ties to Russia offered the Trump campaign unrelated information on donors to the Clinton Foundation [Reuters].
  • Special counsel Robert Meuller has interviewed White House senior policy adviser Stephen Miller as part of the probe into Russia’s involvement in the 2016 election [CNN].
  • The bribery trial of Democratic Senator Robert Menendez could end in a deadlocked jury. A former juror who had to leave the trial said she would have found Menendez not guilty [Politico].
  • The U.S. Air Force missed at least two chances to prevent the man who killed 26 people at a Texas church on Sunday from buying guns [Reuters].

On this day in history:

  • 1775 – The United States Marine Corps, then known as the Continental Marines,  is founded at Tun Tavern in Philadelphia by Samuel Nicholas.
  • 1871 – Journalist Henry Stanley found Scottish missionary David Livingstone in a small African village. His famous comment: “Dr. Livingstone, I presume.”
  • 1898 – Beginning of the Wilmington insurrection of 1898, the only instance of a municipal government being overthrown in United States history.
  • 1969 – National Educational Television (the predecessor to the Public Broadcasting Service) debuts Sesame Street.
  • 1975 – The freighter S.S. Edmund Fitzgerald sinks during a storm on Lake Superior, killing all 29 crew on board.
  • 1989 – Germans begin to tear down the Berlin Wall