ArchiveWhat You Need to Know About Utah Politics Today – January 15, 2014Bryan Schott·January 15, 2014· Share Swallow investigation cost continues to rise. McAdams stresses education and economic opportunity. Countdown: 12 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature 57 days until the final day of the 2014 Legislature 160 days until Utah’s 2014 primary elections 293 days to the 2014 midterm elections 656 days to the 2015 elections 721 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses 1027 days to the 2016 presidential election Today’s Utah news highlights: The committee investigating John Swallow hears a number of proposed changes to Utah election law as a result of Swallow’s dirty dealings [Utah Policy, Tribune]. The cost of the House investigation into Swallow has above $3 million and continues to climb [KSL]. Here’s the video of John Swallow testifying under oath in the Lt. Governor’s investigation into election law violations [Tribune]. Tim Lawson, Mark Shurtleff’s “fixer,” posts bail [Deseret News]. Utahns react to news that Oklahoma’s ban on same-sex marriage was struck down by a federal judge [Fox 13]. Same-sex marriage backers deliver a petition with more than 32,000 signatures to Attorney General Sean Reyes asking him to not spend an estimated $2 million defending Amendment 3 in court [Tribune]. Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams stresses education during his State of the County Address [Utah Policy, Tribune]. Gov. Gary Herbert, along with other governors, meets with President Obama [Deseret News]. The Congressional budget deal could cost Utah $35 million in PILT payments to Utah counties [Tribune]. Sen. Kevin Van Tassell will seek re-election in 2014 [Park Record]. A new report says Utah gets a “D+” for its educational policies [KSL]. Some Weber County residents smell a rat in the decision by the Weber County Commission to not give Jan Zogmaister the chairmanship [Standard-Examiner]. Average Utah gas prices jump 8 cents over the last month [Deseret News]. On this day in history: The Republic of New Connecticut, which later changed its name to Vermont, declared its independence in 1777. The donkey was first used as a symbol for the Democratic Party in Harper’s Weekly in 1870. Martin Luther King, Jr. was born in Atlanta in 1929. Construction on the Pentagon was completed in 1943. President Nixon halted offensive operations in North Vietnam in 1973. “Happy Days” premiered on ABC in 1974. The NASA Spirit rover rolled onto the surface of Mars in 2004. Captain Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger made an emergency landing in the Hudson River after a flock of birds disabled his aircraft in 2009.