Situational awareness – July 30, 2018

Good Monday morning from Salt Lake City. We are under 100 days until the 2018 midterm elections.

Utah Republicans once again consider anti-SB54 measures. Trump threatens to shut down the government unless Congress funds the border wall. Trump tangles with the New York Times over his anti-press rhetoric.


  • 99 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 182 days until the first day of the 2019 Utah Legislature (1/28/2019)
  • 827 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)


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GOP hardliners move to undermine SB54

The Utah GOP Central Committee will consider more proposals to punish candidates who gather signatures to get on the primary ballot –

Trump’s farm subsidies

Our “Political Insiders” pan the Trump administration’s plan to provide up to $12 billion for farmers hurt by Trump’s protectionist trade policies –


  • Rep. Mia Love is again attacking Democrat Ben McAdams on the abortion issue [Tribune].
  • Former Attorney General Mark Shurtleff is suing Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill, the FBI and state investigators claiming the public corruption case against him was politically motivated [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • The Los Angeles Times looks at how the medical marijuana ballot initiative is pitting the LDS Church against some of the LDS faithful –
  • The backers of the Better Boundaries ballot initiative are raising big bucks for a campaign to persuade Utahns to vote for the proposal in November [Deseret News].
  • Utah’s members of Congress are scheduling fewer town hall meetings during the summer recess [Tribune].
  • The Salt Lake City Council is betting residents will pass an $87 million bond in November to fix the city’s roads [Tribune].
  • Latinos make up just 2.5 percent of educators in Utah [Associated Press].
  • Bird scooters are expanding their fleet of electric scooters in Salt Lake City as rival company Lime enters the market [Deseret News].


  • President Trump is once again threatening to shut down the federal government unless Congress comes up with billions of dollars of funding for his wall on the U.S.-Mexico border –
  • GOP candidates are barely talking about the booming economy on the campaign trail ahead of this year’s midterm elections –
  • We’re less than 100 days to go until the 2018 midterm elections. The Cook Political Report says Democrats are “substantial favorites” to win control of the House –
  • Top Republican donor Charles Koch says he’d be open to working with Democrats who share his values. He also says he has regrets about some of the politicians his political network has supported in the past –
  • President Trump tweeted about a private meeting with the publisher of the New York Times, suggesting that journalists are “unpatriotic” for negative reporting about his administration. Times publisher A.G. Sulzberger said he met with Trump to raise concerns about his “deeply troubling anti-press rhetoric” –
  • President Trump lashed out at special counsel Robert Mueller on Twitter Sunday, accusing Mueller of “conflicts of interest” in his probe into the Russian attack on the 2016 election –
  • The trial of former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort gets underway on Tuesday –
  • Corporate executives see big gains in their bank accounts because of the Trump tax cuts –
  • Congress still hasn’t fixed a provision in the tax overhaul law they passed last year that will force nonprofits, including churches, to pay taxes on certain employee benefits –
  • Most states won’t have updated voting equipment in place before the 2020 presidential election –
  • Sen. James Lankford says Russians are seeking to interfere in the 2018 midterms “regardless of the candidate is” –

  • Potential 2020 Democratic presidential candidates are already aggressively fundraising due to fears a crowded field will make campaign dollars scarce next year –

  • A prankster put a portrait of Vladimir Putin where President Trump’s picture should be hanging in the Colorado state Capitol building –


  • 1619 – In Jamestown, Virginia, the first representative assembly in the Americas, the House of Burgesses, convenes for the first time.

  • 1729 – Founding of Baltimore, Maryland.
  • 1863 – Representatives of the United States and tribal leaders including Chief Pocatello (of the Shoshone) sign the Treaty of Box Elder.
  • 1956 – A joint resolution of Congress is signed by President Dwight D. Eisenhower, authorizing In God We Trust as the national motto.
  • 1965 – President Lyndon B. Johnson signs the Social Security Act of 1965 into law, establishing Medicare and Medicaid.
  • 1969 – President Richard Nixon makes an unscheduled visit to South Vietnam and meets with President Nguyen Van Thieu and U.S. military commanders.
  • 1974 – President Richard Nixon releases subpoenaed White House recordings after being ordered to do so by the Supreme Court.
  • 1974 – The House Judiciary Committee, by a vote of 21-17, approved a third article of impeachment against President Richard Nixon, charging him with ignoring congressional subpoenas. Nixon resigned just over a week later before he could be impeached.
  • 1975 – Jimmy Hoffa disappears from the parking lot of the Machus Red Fox restaurant in a Detroit suburb. He is never seen or heard from again.