Today's Situational Awareness

Good Monday morning from Salt Lake City

Welcome to Utah's must-read daily political news rundown. Please encourage your friends and colleagues to sign up for our emails.

Here are the stories we're following today:

  • Utah GOP chairman Derek Brown wants to raise $1 million for next year's elections
  • Former Massachusetts Gov. Bill Weld predicts he'll beat Trump in Utah in 2020
  • The Supreme Court is set to issue rulings on partisan gerrymandering and the 2020 Census

Trivia time

On Friday we asked how many people have been inaugurated POTUS at least once?

The answer is a bit complicated. As Clark Larsen writes:

"So often we hear that Donald Trump is our 45th president, but he is the 44th person to hold the office. For some unfathomable reason, historians choose to give Grover Cleveland two numbers, #22 and #24. because his terms were nonconsecutive."

Just two readers were savvy enough to send in the right answer:

  • Zachary Zundel
  • David Schneider

If you'd like to be our guest quizmaster, send your questions to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Conversation BubbleMy inbox is open to you!

Got a confidential news tip? Is there a story we should be following? Drop me a line at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The daily newsletter gets you up to speed on the top local and national news about politics and public policy. Our news is curated by Managing Editor Bryan Schott, along with help from Golden Webb. ((Click here to subscribe))

National Briefing

Supreme Court. The high court has two weeks left to issue rulings in 24 cases, including high-profile decisions about partisan gerrymandering and whether the 2020 census will have a citizenship question -


  • Iran announced Monday they would begin to enrich more uranium, going beyond what they were permitted to produce under the 2015 nuclear deal that the U.S. withdrew from last year -
  • Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday the U.S. is "considering a range of options," including military options, to address rising tensions with Iran -

Critical negotiations. The Trump administration and leaders in Congress plan to meet this week to try and find a deal on spending to avoid another government shutdown, a potential default on the national debt and to head off billions of dollars in automatic spending cuts -

Here we go again. President Trump wants to counter the Democratic advantage on healthcare during next year's election. He is pushing to revive his promise to replace Obamacare with "something teriffic" that costs less and covers more people -


  • President Donald Trump will officially kick off his re-election bid on Tuesday at a rally in Florida -
  • Democrat Pete Buttigieg raised an eye-popping $7 million in April -
  • Democrats plan to spend hundreds of millions on campaign ads attacking President Trump while they are still searching for a nominee -

Russia. The U.S. is stepping up cyber attacks against Russia's power grid. Officials say they believe President Trump has not been briefed about the operations against Russia because they are worried he may order a stop or discuss the efforts with foreign officials -

Polls! Polls! Polls!

  • The Trump campaign fired multiple pollsters after unflattering internal numbers leaked showing Trump trailing several 2020 Democratic hopefuls in key states. Before the leak, Trump claimed the numbers were fake -
  • A new Fox News poll shows former Vice President Joe Biden leads Trump by to points nationally -
  • 50% of registered voters in Texas say they plan to vote for President Trump next year, but 50% say they don't -

The investigations

  • Some House Democrats want to impeach President Trump so badly they don't care if it torpedoes their party's chances in 2020 -
  • The final decision on whether to move forward with an impeachment inquiry against President Trump will likely be up to centrist Democrats in swing districts -
  • House Democrats are considering calling former New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie as well as former Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort to testify -
  • There are at least 15 outside investigations into President Trump. He plans to use those probes as a political weapon to rally his base next year -

Prescription drugs. Americans are heading to Canada to buy drugs as prescription prices soar in the U.S. -

Today at Utah Policy

New report compares teacher retirement in Utah and neighboring states

by Utah Foundation
Utah Foundation’s recent report, Apples to Apples: How Teacher Pay in Utah Stacks Up to…

A commanding lead? - Bernick and Schott on politics

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
We have our first poll in the Salt Lake City mayor's race. Jim Dabakis has a lead, but a…

Campaign tip: A million little things add up to a win

by LaVarr Webb, Publisher
Municipal elections are well underway, and a lot of hopefuls are gearing up for 2020…

Defense spending authorization passes committee

by Press release
The House Armed Services Committee passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA)…

Sen. Lee introduces Native Species Protection Act

by Press release
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced the Native Species Protection Act Thursday, a bill that…

McAdams boosts funding for youth suicide prevention

by Press release
Congressman Ben McAdams successfully pushed for more support for national health…

Lighter Side

Foreign Dirt
[Imitating Trump] “Sure, I mean a campaign accepting help from a foreign country is against the law, but since when is breaking the law a crime? I mean, do both. Why not do the wrong thing and the right thing? Let’s just kill two birds with one crime.” — STEPHEN COLBERT

Wise Words


"Doing well is the result of doing good. That's what capitalism is all about." Ralph Waldo Emerson