Utah’s Democrats See Missed Opportunity in Snarr Candidacy

Former Murray Mayor Dan Snarr has decided to get back into politics by running for the County Council seat currently held by Aimee Winder Newton. But, some Democrats wish Snarr had instead filed to run for the seat being vacated by Rep. Tim Cosgrove.


Some high-ranking Dems tell Utah Policy they are very worried about the party’s ability to hang on to Cosgrove’s House District 44 seat now that he’s stepping down, and they saw Snarr as a viable candidate to keep that seat in their column.

Instead, Snarr has filed for the District 3 seat that belonged to David Wilde until he was forced to step down because of illness.

Snarr, who has decided to run as a Democrat this year after spending 16 years as Mayor of Murray without a party affiliation, says he just couldn’t handle the grind of a 45-day legislative session.

“I love Tim, but I didn’t have it in my constitution to go spend 45 days on the Hill,” says Snarr.

He acknowledges he got a lot of pressure from Democrats to run for the HD 44 seat, but he just couldn’t bring himself to take the plunge.

“I know they’re worried about that seat. I’m worried about my mental stability.”

Democrats are right to be worried. Cosgrove first captured the seat in 2002 when he defeated Chad Bennion by just 86 votes. After a couple of easy battles in the middle of the last decade, Cosgrove’s last two elections (2012 and 2010) have been very close.


Tim Cosgrove (D)

Republican Challenger



Christy Achziger – 42%



Shawn Bradley – 48%



Raymond Poole – 39%



Raymond Poole – 38%



Chad Bennion – 42%

On the final day of the 2014 session, after learning of Cosgrove’s plans to retire, one Republican legislator remarked Cosgrove was able to keep the seat in Democratic hands because of his hard work. “That seat is completely winnable now,” they said.

Some in Utah’s minority party saw Snarr as the perfect candidate to keep Cosgrove’s district in the fold, but Snarr says he’s more interested in local politics.

“The rubber hits the road at the lowest form of government. People can see how their dollars are spent.”