How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – March 19, 2014

Lawmakers passed the 3rd-most bills ever in 2014. Democrats hold their caucus meetings. Utah’s tax burden is below the national average.



  • The Utah candidate filing period closes tomorrow at 5 pm
  • Utah Republicans hold their caucus meetings tomorrow evening
  • 37 days until the Utah State Republican and Democratic conventions
  • 97 days until Utah’s 2014 primary elections
  • 230 days to the 2014 midterm elections
  • 313 days to the start of the 2015 Utah Legislature
  • 593 days to the 2015 elections
  • 658 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses
  • 964 days to the 2016 presidential election

Today’s Utah political news highlights:

  • An analysis shows the 2014 Legislature passed the 3rd most bills ever [Utah Policy].
  • Utah’s Democrats say turnout for their caucus meetings was down, but not as much as some expected [Deseret News, Daily Herald].
  • Sim Gill announces his bid for another term as Salt Lake County District Attorney [Deseret News].
  • Democrat Charles Stormont jumps into the race for Attorney General to challenge Republican Sean Reyes [Deseret News].
  • One of the candidates Utah Democrats were hoping could win a GOP-controlled legislative seat decides against a run at the last minute [Utah Policy].
  • Murray Mayor Dan Snarr is challenging for a seat on the Salt Lake County Council, but Utah Democrats wish he was running for the seat being vacated by Tim Cosgrove instead [Utah Policy].
  • Sen. Ralph Okerlund, who collapsed from heart failure on the second-to-last day of the Legislature, heads home from the hospital [Tribune].
  • Clean air activists grade the performance of Utah lawmakers during the just-finished legislative session and find it wanting [Tribune, Standard-Examiner].
  • A study says Utah’s taxes are the 14th lowest in the nation [Tribune].
  • A group of Utah ski industry is set to unveil a plan to connect seven resorts in Salt Lake and Summit counties [Tribune].
  • Utah farmers once again call for immigration reform [Tribune].
  • A new report finds tourism is a major economic driver in a number of rural counties in Utah [Tribune].

On this day in history:

  • 1860 – William Jennings Bryan, three-time Democratic presidential nominee, was born in Salem, Ill.
  • 1891 – Earl Warren, the 14th chief justice of the United States, was born in Los Angeles.
  • 1917 – The Supreme Court upheld the eight-hour work day for railroads.
  • 1918 – Congress approved daylight-saving time.
  • 1920 – The U.S. Senate rejected the Treaty of Versailles for a second time.
  • 1931 – Nevada legalized gambling.
  • 1962 – Bob Dylan’s debut album was released.
  • 1995 – Michael Jordan returned to the NBA after an attempt to become a professional baseball player.
  • 2003 – An American-led coalition went to war against Iraq, beginning Operation Iraqi Freedom with a series of air-strikes on Baghdad.