How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – February 21, 2014

Senate advances anti-Count My Vote bill. House GOP votes to move the prison. Record number of bills for the 2014 Legislature.

Countdown:

  • 20 days until the final day of the 2014 Legislature
  • 21 days until the Utah candidate filing period opens
  • 25 days until the Utah Democratic Party caucus meetings
  • 25 days until the Utah candidate filing period closes
  • 27 days until the Utah GOP caucus meetings
  • 64 days until the Utah State Republican and Democratic conventions
  • 123 days until Utah’s 2014 primary elections
  • 256 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 619 days to the 2015 elections
  • 684 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 990 days to the 2016 presidential election

Today’s Utah political news highlights:

  • The Utah Senate advances a measure to head off the “Count My Vote” initiative [Utah Policy, Deseret News, Tribune, Daily Herald].
  • Backers of “Count My Vote” slam SB 54 in a Capitol press conference [Utah Policy].
  • The Utah House GOP votes in favor of moving the state prison away from Draper [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • A group of Democratic lawyers ask the U.S. Department of Justice to re-open their investigation into former Attorneys General John Swallow and Mark Shurtleff [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • More than 1,000 people rally at the Capitol for the state to expand Medicaid [Tribune].
  • Legislators have introduced a record number of bills, opening more than 1,200 bill files this year [Standard-Examiner].
  • First there was the “Zion Curtain,” now comes the “Zion Warning” for restaurants that serve alcoholic beverages [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • A legislative committee gives the nod to a bill raising the age to use and purchase tobacco to 21 [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Rep. Jim Matheson makes his final visit to Capitol Hill as a member of Congress [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Rep. Eric Hutchings uses some “creative” funding on a bill offering up to $25 million in tax credits to low-income Utahns [City Weekly].
  • Rep. Ronda Menlove wants the state to study whether to scrap daylight savings [City Weekly].
  • The Holladay City Council passes an anti-discrimination ordinance that includes sexual orientation [Tribune].

On this day in history:

  • Former President John Quincy Adams suffered a stroke on the floor of the House of Representatives in 1848. He died two days later.
  • The Washington Monument was dedicated in 1885.
  • Black Muslim leader Malcolm X was shot to death in 1965.
  • President Richard Nixon began his historic trip to China in 1972.
  • Former Attorney General John Mitchell and former White House aides H.R. Haldeman and John Erlichman were sentenced to prison for their roles in the Watergate scandal in 1975.