Situational awareness – April 10, 2018

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City.

A GOP candidate wasn’t a Republican when he filed to run for office. Mia Love’s big fundraising haul. Federal agents raid the office and home of Donald Trump’s lawyer.

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Tick Tock

  • 6 days until the signature-gathering deadline for statewide ballot initiatives (4/16/2018)
  • 11 days until the Utah GOP State Convention (4/21/2018)
  • 18 days until the Utah Democratic State Convention (4/28/2018)
  • 27 days until the final day a veto override session may begin (5/7/2018)
  • 77 days until the 2018 Primary Election (6/26/2018)
  • 211 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 294 days until the first day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (1/28/2019)
  • 940 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

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Here are the news stories driving Tuesday

The Republican candidate who wasn’t a Republican

GOP U.S. Senate candidate Sam Parker was not registered as a Republican when he filed to run for the party’s nomination. He blames a “glitch” for the situation, but the Utah Elections Office says Parker personally changed his registration from unaffiliated to Republican and back twice since 2016 [Utah Policy].

Love’s big fundraising haul

Rep. Mia Love raised $750,000 during the most recent reporting period but also posted campaign expenses totaling more than $450,000 [Utah Policy].

Other Utah headlines

  • Salt Lake City leaders say support for a proposed sales tax hike to fund a number projects in the city is “overwhelming” [Deseret News].
  • Rep. Mike Kennedy, who is running for the Republican U.S. Senate nomination, is meeting with small groups of delegates ahead of next week’s Utah GOP Convention [Daily Herald].
  • Most Utah families will pay more in state taxes next year because the Utah legislature failed to make changes based on the federal tax legislation passed by Congress last year [Tribune].
  • Members of Utah’s congressional delegation want President Trump to respond to an apparent chemical weapons attack on Syrian civilians [Deseret News].
  • Bob Farrington, founder of the Downtown Alliance, died from cancer at the age of 66 [Deseret News].
  • A big power outage affected more than 50,000 Utahns along the Wasatch Front Monday afternoon [Deseret News].

National headlines

  • The FBI raided the office, home, and hotel room of Donald Trump’s longtime lawyer Michael Cohen. Agents seized records and documents related to several topics, including payments to an adult film star. The raids were not the work of special counsel Robert Mueller. Instead, they are related to information uncovered as part of Mueller’s investigation that Mueller brought to officials in the DOJ [New York Times].
  • Cohen is being investigated for possible bank fraud, wire fraud, and campaign finance violations [Washington Post].
  • The raid on Cohen’s office has angered President Trump, who openly mulled during a meeting whether he should fire special counsel Robert Mueller [CNN].
  • On Tuesday morning President Trump tweeted “Attorney-client privilege is dead,” and “A TOTAL WITCH HUNT!!!
  • Special counsel Robert Mueller is investigating a $150,000 payment to Trump’s foundation from a Ukrainian steel magnate for a talk Trump gave during the presidential campaign [New York Times].
  • The annual federal budget deficit is projected to be over $1 trillion in 2020 because of increased spending and the big tax cut package passed by Congress [New York Times].
  • Senate Republicans are sticking by embattled EPA head Scott Pruitt because they are worried they would be unable to get a potential replacement through a bruising confirmation process [Politico].
  • Florida Governor Rick Scott jumps into the race for U.S. Senate. The contest against incumbent Democrat Bill Nelson could be the most expensive U.S. Senate race in history, with estimates saying the two men could spend upwards of $200 million [Politico].
  • Troops sent to patrol the border with Mexico will help maintain roads, fly drones for surveillance and clear brush. However, they will not be arresting migrants attempting to cross into the U.S. illegally [Washington Post].
  • Uh oh…Russia has reportedly figured out how to jam U.S. drones in Syria [NBC News].
  • U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth becomes the first senator to give birth while in office, delivering a baby girl on Monday [Chicago Sun-Times].
  • The largest Facebook page dedicated to Black Lives Matter was discovered to be a scam with ties to a white man living in Australia [CNN].

On this day in history

  • 1816 – Congress approves the creation of the Second Bank of the United States.
  • 1866 – the American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA) is founded in New York by Henry Bergh.
  • 1912 – RMS Titanic sets sail from Southampton, England on her maiden and only voyage.
  • 1925 – The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald is first published.
  • 1970 – Paul McCartney announces he is leaving The Beatles for personal and professional reasons.