Ten Things You Need to Know Today – Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Good Tuesday morning from Salt Lake City. There are 319 days left in 2016.

The political games surrounding Justice Antonin Scalia’s replacement begin. Lawmakers take no action on a contentious same-sex adoption bill. The LDS Church clarifies it’s opposition to a medical marijuana bill.

The clock:

  • Four days to the Nevada Democratic Caucuses and South Carolina Republican Primary (2/20/2016)
  • Seven days to the Nevada Republican Caucuses (2/23/2016)
  • 11 days to the South Carolina Democratic Primary (2/27/2016)
  • 23 days to the final day of the 2016 Utah Legislature – (3/10/2016)
  • 35 days to the Utah Republican and Democratic caucus meetings (3/22/2016)
  • 67 days to the Utah Republican and Democratic State Conventions (4/23/2016)
  • 133 days to the 2016 Utah primary election – (6/28/2016)
  • 153 days to the 2016 Republican National Convention in Cleveland (7/18/2016)
  • 160 days to the 2016 Democratic National Convention in Philadelphia (7/25/2016)
  • 266 days until the 2016 presidential election – (11/8/2016)

Tuesday’s top-10 headlines:

  1. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia died suddenly on Saturday [New York Times]. Politicians on both sides of the aisle wasted no time politicizing his death, with Republicans vowing to block any replacements in Obama’s final year in office [CNN, Yahoo, Washington Post, New York Times]. If that wasn’t enough, there are already some conspiracy theories swirling around the circumstances of Scalia’s death [Washington Post].
  2. Here’s a great breakdown of the remaining 2016 nominating contests that concludes a brokered convention is increasingly likely for Republicans [Utah Policy].
  3. A bill to treat married same-sex couples just as heterosexual married couples in adoptions and foster care cases stalls in a legislative committee [Associated Press, Deseret News, Fox 13].
  4. The LDS Church clarifies its opposition to Sen. Mark Madsen‘s medical marijuana legislation [Deseret News, Tribune]. Medical marijuana supporters plan to launch a ballot initiative on the subject to possibly let Utahns decide the issue in November [Fox 13].
  5. The number of free lunches for lawmakers has dropped while groups hoping to lobby legislators are opting to host more receptions instead [Tribune].
  6. Rep. Johnny Anderson, who was facing a tough re-election rematch this year, has opted not to run for another term [Utah Policy].
  7. Legislators are eyeing a hefty tax hike on e-cigarettes to help pay for rural health care [Deseret News, Tribune].
  8. A renewable energy company with ties to the polygamist Kingston clan donated quite a bit of money to Utah lawmakers [Tribune].
  9. Members of Utah’s Congressional delegation send a letter to President Barack Obama asking him not to designate a new national monument in Utah [Utah Policy, Deseret News].
  10. A new poll shows what Utah Republican delegates think are the top issues facing the state [Utah Policy].

On this day in history:

  • 1923 – Archaeologists open the tomb of Tutankhamen, “King Tut,” in Egypt’s Valley of the Kings.
  • 1948 – NBC aired the first nightly newscast, “The Camel Newsreel Theatre,” which consisted of Fox Movietone newsreels.
  • 1959 – Fidel Castro was sworn in as Cuba’s leader and set up a Communist regime.
  • 1968 – The nation’s first 911 emergency telephone system was inaugurated in Haleyville, Alabama.