How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – June 11, 2014

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor loses his Congressional seat in a primary. Lack of action on Medicaid expansion could impact Salt Lake County. An ethics proposal aims to prevent lobbyists from giving false information to lawmakers.



  • 13 days to Utah’s 2014 primary election
  • 146 days until the 2014 midterm elections
  • 229 days to the opening day of the 2015 legislature
  • 510 days until the 2015 elections
  • 586 days to the 2016 Iowa Caucuses (tentative)
  • 881 days until the 2016 presidential election

Wednesday’s political news highlights:

  • Absolute shocker! House Majority Leader Eric Cantor loses his primary fight to a Tea Party challenger in Virginia [Politico].
  • The Utah Legislature’s inaction on Medicaid expansion could mean cuts in prevention and treatment programs in Salt Lake County [Deseret News].
  • The Salt Lake City Council approves a budget for next year that gives employees a modest pay raise but nixes money for holiday fireworks [Tribune].
  • A pro-same-sex marriage group launches an online petition urging the state to “stop hurting Utah families” by refusing benefits to married gay couples [Tribune].
  • The Salt Lake City police officer who refused an assignment as part of this past weekend’s Pride parade has resigned [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • The Days of ’47 Parade organizers will not go back on their decision to not allow the pro-gay “Mormons Building Bridges” a place during the July 24th event [Tribune].
  • Sen. Daniel Thatcher is proposing an ethics measure to prevent lobbyists from providing false information to legislators [Utah Policy].
  • Doug Owens, the Democratic candidate in Utah’s 4th Congressional District, makes a 300,000 television ad buy in his race against Republican Mia Love [Deseret News].
  • New Census numbers show more than half of foreign-born Utah residents speak English “very well” [Tribune].
  • The state is suing the Bureau of Land Management for blocking energy development on some public lands in the state [Tribune].

On this day in history:

  • 1509 – England’s King Henry VIII married Catherine of Aragon.
  • 1770 – Captain James Cook discovered the Great Barrier Reef off Australia.
  • 1942 – The United States and the Soviet Union signed a lend lease agreement to aid the Soviet efforts in World War II.
  • 1963 – Gov. George Wallace confronted federal troops at the University of Alabama in an effort to defy a federal order allowing two black students to enroll in school.
  • 1963 – Buddhist monk Quang Duc immolated himself on a Saigon street to protest the government of South Vietnamese President Ngo Dinh Diem.
  • 1987 – British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher won a third consecutive term in office.
  • 1990 – The Supreme Court struck down a federal law prohibiting desecration of the American Flag.
  • 1993 – The U.S. Supreme Court ruled people who commit “hate crimes” may be sentenced to extra punishment.
  • 2001 – Timothy McVeigh was executed by lethal injection for the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing.
  • 2004 – Ronald Reagan, the 40th president of the United States, was laid to rest following a state funeral in Washington, D.C.