Ten Things You Need to Know Today – Friday, January 15, 2016

Good Friday morning from Salt Lake City. There are 351 days left in 2016.

Trump and Cruz dominate the latest GOP debate. Half of Utahns approve of the Utah Transit Authority. Rep. Ken Ivory gets a big raise for advocating for the local takeover of public lands.

The clock:

  • Ten days to the opening day of the 2016 Utah Legislature – (1/25/2016)
  • 17 days to the 2016 Iowa Caucus – (2/1/2016)
  • 25 days to the 2016 New Hampshire Primary – (2/9/2016)
  • 55 days to the final day of the 2016 Utah Legislature – (3/10/2016)
  • 67 days to the Utah Republican and Democratic caucus meetings (3/22/2016)
  • 99 days to the Utah Republican and Democratic State Conventions (4/23/2016)
  • 165 days to the 2016 Utah primary election – (6/28/2016)
  • 298 days until the 2016 presidential election – (11/8/2016)

Friday’s top-10 headlines:

  1. Republicans face off in their second-to-last debate ahead of the Iowa Caucuses. Donald Trump and Ted Cruz dominated the affair, cementing their status as frontrunners [The Hill, New York Times, Washington Post, CNN].
  2. Trump’s lead among likely Republican primary voters has jumped to its highest level ever [New York Times].
  3. Ben Carson‘s campaign finance guru quits after media reports he was paying himself a salary of $20,000 per month [Politico, New York Times].
  4. Hillary Clinton‘s national lead is evaporating in 2016 even faster than it did over Barack Obama in 2008 [Washington Post].
  5. A new poll shows half of Utahns approve of the performance of the Utah Transit Authority. About the same number also would like to see board members elected rather than appointed [Utah Policy].
  6. Tax records show Rep. Ken Ivory paid himself $135,000 as the president of the American Lands Council. That number is $40,000 higher than what he earned in that position in 2014 [Tribune].
  7. A lot of Republican candidates are availing themselves of the signature gathering route to get on the 2016 primary ballot [Utah Policy].
  8. Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski taps Mike Reberg, who most recently was director of animal services for Salt Lake County, to head up Salt Lake’s Department of Public Utilities [Utah Policy, Tribune].
  9. Rep. Brian King wants to re-focus Utah’s sex education away from “abstinence-based” to something more comprehensive [Fox 13].
  10. In the wake of a $1.6 billion Powerball jackpot, it’s worth noting that former Democratic Rep. Arlo James tried to bring the lottery to Utah for a decade, but lawmakers refused to vote on the proposal [2 News].

 On this day in history:

  • 1870 – A cartoon by Thomas Nast appeared in Harper’s weekly with a donkey symbolizing the Democratic Party for the first time.
  • 1892 – Dr. James Naismith published the rules of basketball.
  • 1973 – President Richard Nixon called a halt to U.S. military offensives in Vietnam.
  • 2001 – Wikipedia made its debut online.
  • 2009 – US Airways Capt. Chelsey Sullenberger guided a jetliner disabled by a bird strike just after takeoff from New York’s LaGuardia Airport to a safe landing on the Hudson River. All 155 people aboard survived.