How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – September 9, 2013

Countdown:  There are 58 days to the 2013 municipal elections, 142 days until the start of the 2014 Legislature, 417 days until the 2014 midterm elections and 854 days until the 2016 Iowa Caucuses.

  • Nice gig if you can get it. The lead lawyer in the House investigation into John Swallow will charge the state $740 per hour [Tribune].
  • Sen. Orrin Hatch has returned to his old consensus building ways in Washington [Tribune].
  • Tea party favorite Sen. Ted Cruz is coming to Utah to raise money for Sen. Mike Lee [Deseret News].
  • School Trust Lands officials are not backing down from their decision to open part of the Book Cliffs to energy exploration [Tribune].
  • The BLM pulls a dinosaur quarry from a list of lands they plan to lease for oil and gas exploration [Tribune].
  • Utah election officials are grappling with changing voting technology, as the electronic voting machines currently in use are quickly becoming obsolete [Tribune].
  • Paul Rolly says the state’s new school grading system is just the latest legislative attack on public education [Tribune].
  • Not content to wait for this year’s election, Pignanelli and Webb run down a list of possible future candidates for 2014 and beyond [Deseret News].
  • Salt Lake City Mayor Ben McAdams’ Twitter chat covers a number of important topics…like twerking and Star Wars [City Weekly].
  • Former state Representative Jeff Fox’s sentencing on child porn and drug possession charges was lenient based on federal guidelines [City Weekly].
  • Blogger Daniel Burton worries a proposed federal “shield law” to protect journalists would not include so-called “citizen journalists” [Publius Online].
  • Utah could be at the center of a court fight over foreclosures [Tribune].
  • Utah farmers push for immigration reform, saying they need more help from immigrant labor [Tribune].
  • Talisker, which is seeking to evict Park City Mountain Resort, wants emails between the two entities because they are accusing PCMR of fraud [Tribune].