Morning must reads for Monday, July 17, 2017

Monday, July 17, 2017 - 10:15am

Local News Highlights: Daily Briefing

Morning must reads for Monday, July 17, 2017

Good Monday morning from Salt Lake City. Today is the 198th day of the year. There are 167 days remaining in 2017.

John Curtis leading the GOP money race. Donald Trump's approval falls to historic lows. GOP health care bill is on life support.

The clock:

  • 8 days until ballots for the August primary are mailed to voters (7/25/2017)
  • 29 days until the 2017 Utah primary election (8/15/2017)
  • 113 days until the 2017 election (11/7/2017)
  • 189 days until the opening day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (1/22/2018)
  • 234 days until the final day of the 2018 Utah Legislature (3/8/2018)
  • 477 days until the 2018 midterm elections (11/6/2018)
  • 1,205 days until the 2020 presidential election (11/3/2020)

Today's political TL; DR -

  • Provo Mayor John Curtis is leading the fundraising race in the August GOP primary. Curtis has more than $200,000 in the bank. Interestingly, most of Curtis' donors come from inside Utah, while Chris Herrod and Tanner Ainge are relying primarily upon out of state support [Utah Policy].
  • Our "Political Insiders" are at least open to the idea that Donald Trump's campaign could have colluded with the Russian government during the 2016 presidential election [Utah Policy].
  • On this week's "Beg to Differ" podcast, Bryan Schott and guest host State Auditor John Dougall speak with Rep. Chris Stewart who discusses Trump, Russia, North Korea, and cyber security [Utah Policy].
  • Television commercials for the August 15 GOP primary will begin airing on Monday [Deseret News].
  • The United Utah Party goes before a federal judge in their effort to place Jim Bennett on the ballot in November's special congressional election under their party banner [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • A judge has upheld the request by the family of troubled Salt Lake County Recorder Gary Ott to become his guardian. Ott's lawyer says they will review his finances over the past few years to see if there are any irregularities stemming from the time that his reported girlfriend, Karmen Sanone, was helping him [Deseret News].
  • The state school board is starting the process to revise Utah's health education curriculum, which will likely spark a fight over the state's sex education standards [Deseret News, Tribune].
  • Outgoing Salt Lake County Sheriff Jim Winder talks about why he's leaving that job to become the police chief in Moab [Deseret News].
  • Daggett County is trying to figure out what to do with its jail that is sitting empty. Options include housing prisoners from the state or Salt Lake County [Tribune].
  • West Jordan is the latest city to ban aerial fireworks [Deseret News].

National headlines:

  • President Donald Trump's approval rating has dipped to 36%, with 58% of Americans disapproving of his job performance [Washington Post].
  • We're heading into the second half of President Donald Trump's first year in office, and time is running out for him to turn around his struggling presidency [USA Today].
  • Republicans have delayed a vote on their health care bill until after Arizona Sen. John McCain returns from eye surgery. That could be longer than anticipated, which could have big implications for attempts to pass the bill [New York Times].
  • The current GOP health care bill could be in trouble as eight to 10 Republicans reportedly have serious reservations about the legislation. Republican Senators Susan Collins and Rand Paul already oppose the bill. If one more Republican votes against the bill, it will fail [Reuters].
  • While the controversy surrounding Russia's meddling in the 2016 election shows no signs of dying down, what did Vladimir Putin actually gain by interfering last year? [New York Magazine]
  • Even though Russia used "fake news" to disrupt the 2016 election, they probably didn't break any laws [Huffington Post]. 
  • Federal Election Commission officials aren't sure how to respond to Russian interference in the 2016 election or how to prevent it from happening again [The Hill].
  • President Donald Trump has declared this "Made in America" week to focus on products made in the USA, but he's coming under fire because most of the products that bear his name are made in overseas factories [Huffington Post].
  • A number of top Republicans in Congress aren't signing on for President Donald Trump's war on the media [BuzzFeed].
  • Here's a little-known danger from the opioid crisis. Needles are turning up everywhere, including hiking trails and playgrounds [Associated Press].

On this day in history:

  • 1821 - Spain ceded Florida to the United States.
  • 1918 - Russia's Czar Nicholas II, his wife and their five children were executed by the Bolsheviks.
  • 1936 - The Spanish Civil War began as Gen. Francisco Franco led an uprising of army troops based in North Africa.
  • 1945 - President Harry S. Truman, Soviet leader Josef Stalin and British Prime Minister Winston Churchill began meeting at Potsdam in the final Allied summit of World War II.
  • 1955 - Disneyland opened in Anaheim, Calif.


Today At Utah Policy

Curtis leading GOP primary fundraising race; Most of Herrod and Ainge's money from outside of Utah
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Provo Mayor John Curtis is winning the money battle ahead of the August 15 GOP primary election, which is more than double his nearest rival....

'Political Insiders' say it's possible Trump colluded with the Russians during the presidential campaign
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Last week Donald Trump Jr. admitted he met with a Russian lawyer with ties to the Kremlin who was offering to pass on damaging information about Hillary Clinton to the Trump campaign.Trump Jr. says the meeting was a bust as the lawyer failed to deliver the goods. Donald Trum...

'Extreme' Use of Painkillers and Doctor Shopping Plague Medicare, New Report Says
By Charles Ornstein, ProPublica
In Washington, D.C., a Medicare beneficiary filled prescriptions for 2,330 pills of oxycodone, hydromorphone and morphine in a single month last year - written by just one of the 42 health providers who prescribed the person such drugs....

Beg to Differ podcast: 'Collusion collision'
By Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
Donald Trump, Jr., son of the President, pulled one of the stupidest moves in the history of American politics when he attempted to collude with the Russian government. We break down the politics surrounding the latest Russia revelations. ...

Policy News

Steady increases in transportation prices propel Wasatch Front Consumer Price Index upward
The Zions Bank Wasatch Front Consumer Price Index (CPI) ticked upward in June, rising 0.6 percent from the previous month....

25k Jobs launch tour to make stops in Box Elder, Cache, Rich and Summit Counties
In Gov. Gary R. Herbert's 2017 State of the State Address, he charged the private and public sector with creating 25,000 jobs in the 25 counties off the Wasatch Front over the next four years. To launch this initiative, Lt. Gov. Spencer J. Cox and World Trade Center Utah are...


Sen. Lee, Rep. Gosar and colleagues send letter asking Sec. Carson to rescind zoning rule
Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rep. Gosar (R-AZ) joined a letter with twelve Senate and six House colleagues in asking Housing and Urban Development Secretary Ben Carson to rescind the Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) Final Rule in an effort to empower local communitie...

State and industry leaders announce Utah Drone Summit
Unmanned aerial systems, better known as drones, are expected to have an economic impact of $82 billion in the U.S. by 2025....

Utah driver practice exam wins Utah Innovation Award
Stoel Rives LLP and the Utah Technology Council announced that Utah.Gov has been recognized with a Utah Innovation Award for its Amazon Echo Alexa Skill. Utah.Gov was selected as an Honorable Mention award winner in the Consumer Software category....

Local Headlines

Salt Lake Tribune

Op-ed: Tribune is biased against Murray Energy

Op-ed: Why every Utahn should care about property taxes

Editorial: Abandoning the Common Core in Utah would cost us more than just money

Utah task force asks: How did Seattle win support for doubling transit taxes?

Colleagues block West Jordan councilman from participating electronically while he is in Alaska for his day job

Judge rules troubled County Recorder Gary Ott's family, not his aide, will serve as his legal guardian - at least for now

Operation Diversion treatment beds in doubt as state rejects county's request for extra funds

New Utah party barred from special election argues only mind readers could meet state's deadlines

What to do with Daggett County's troubled jail? Reopen for state or Salt Lake County inmates or keep it closed

State school board braces for a battle over sex education

Candidate barred from Draper parade; mayor may march

Despite limited housing alternatives, Road Home says it will beat the clock to relocate all downtown shelter families

West Jordan is about to lose its fifth city manager in six years

The Great Salt Lake is half its natural size. Here's why that worries the Audubon Society and what the group plans to do about it.

As young Utah women delay having children, state slips from its trademark rank as the nation's most fertile state

What to do with Daggett County's troubled jail? Reopen for state or Salt Lake County inmates or keep it closed

Deseret News

LaVarr Webb and Frank R. Pignanelli: Orrin Hatch, the homeless and that Russia problem

Hal Boyd: Climate change and children - a diabolically false dilemma

Editorial: Two past presidents show how to transcend partisanship

Judge upholds family guardianship of troubled county recorder

TV commercials set to air in 3rd Congressional District race

State, United Utah Party argue over access to 3rd District special election ballot

State mulls rule change to expand who can grow hemp for research

Board OKs rural Box Elder County school's move to four-day week

Huntsman Sr. interested in trying medical marijuana for his pain

Lee remains undecided on Senate health care bill despite pressure from Pence, others

Winder's worries of becoming a politician pushed him to seek new job

Denial of extra grant money shelves S.L. County plan for 'Operation Diversion' court

Discussion whether to revise state sex, health education standards stirs heated debate

Curtis leading GOP pack in fundraising, Utah-based donors


Deadline for mailed voter registration fast approaching for Utah's congressional special election (Daily Herald)

National Headlines

White House Plans Messaging Campaign to Refocus Attention on Trump's Agenda (Wall Street Journal)

Caitlyn Jenner weighs run for Senate (The Hill)

Research Team Slams Global Warming Data In New Report (Zero Hedge)

Focus on Russia or health care, Dems divided on message (Associated Press)

House Republicans weigh massive partisan spending bill (Politico)

Meet Obamacare repeal's top salesman (Politico)

Martin Luther King Jr. niece pushes back on John Lewis criticism of Trump (The Hill)

McCain's Surgery May Be More Serious Than Thought, Experts Say (New York Times)

Trump voter fraud commission gears up for inaugural meeting (Washington Examiner)

Net Neutrality Is A Poor Solution To The Wrong Problem (Forbes)

Nevada pot retailers get supply relief, but not out of woods (Washington Post)

Wise Words

Window of Opportunity

"If a window of opportunity appears, don't pull down the shade." Tom Peters


Lighter Side


"President Trump held a Cabinet meeting . . . . in which each Cabinet member took turns praising the president. After hearing this, Kim Jong Un said, "Man, even I'm not that insecure." Conan O'Brien