It's Ntl Ugly Truck Day 🚛; family of 5 goes missing from Layton; Utah's cookie wars ending; & Utah Samoan Heritage Festival runs through Sat
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The Utah Policy newsletter is your one-stop source for political and policy-minded news. We scour the news so you don't have to! Send news tips or feedback to Holly Richardson at


Situational Analysis | July 20, 2023

It's Thursday and National Ugly Truck Day 🚛

What You Need to Know

  • One of the losing candidates at the GOP convention to replace Rep. Chris Stewart has filed a lawsuit to remove the winner, Celeste Maloy, from the ballot. R. Quin Denning, who received less than 2% of the convention vote, claims that Maloy was not a member of the GOP when she filed her candidacy. The lawsuit is not personal toward Maloy, he said. It certainly sounds personal toward both Maloy and the Lt. Governor, who he said allowed an election to proceed illegally. The Lt. Governor already laid out why Maloy met the requirements but Denning is unconvinced. It may be too late for the courts to do anything, as some counties have already sent ballots to the printer in preparation for their Aug 15 mailing day. 

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Utah Headlines

Political news

  •  Study finds quarter of Utah lawmakers have ties to real estate industry (KUTV)
  • Proposed bill would enforce harsher penalties for school hoax calls in Utah (KUTV)
  • House Rep called out on ‘racial statements’ (ABC4)
  • Extreme heat strains electric grid — nuclear power will help, Rep. John Curtis says (Deseret News)

Election news

  • Losing candidate sues to have Celeste Maloy disqualified from special election (KSL)
  • Utah State Sen. Todd Weiler throws support behind DeSantis (KSL Newsradio)

General Utah news

  • Shawn Teigen: Ways we can make Utah safer for bicycles (Deseret News)
  • Utah woman killed by tree falling in storm (KSL TV)
  • American Sign Language event in Pleasant Grove hopes to bring awareness to resources (Fox13)
  • Provo institutes citywide fire restrictions ahead of Pioneer Day holiday (Daily Herald)
  • Moab Times-Independent donated to The Salt Lake Tribune, will become nonprofit (Salt Lake Tribune)


  • Crumbl, Crave file motion to dismiss lawsuit in Utah cookie wars (Fox13)
  • Here’s why In-N-Out banned employees in Utah and other states from wearing masks (Deseret News)
  • Delivery drivers want protection against heat. But it's an uphill battle (NPR)
  • The hiring boom is hiding a recession indicator (Wall Street Journal)


  • What do you do with the photos in your camera roll? There are about 3.2 billion photos and 720,000 hours of video created and uploaded to social media daily (Deseret News)


  • Utah’s First Lady hosts conference for educators focusing on mental health (KSL TV)
  • ‘Show Up for Teachers’ continues to show love and appreciation for Utah’s educators (Deseret News)
  • ‘We have to help the helpers’: Inside Abby Cox’s mission to aid Utah’s teachers (Deseret News)
  • After 20 years of repayments, 4,000 Utahns will get their promised student debt relief (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Poll: 59% of Utahns oppose local school boards removing books from libraries, classrooms (Deseret News)
  • Stanford president resigns after fallout from falsified data in his research (NPR)


  •  Bureau of Land Management to host wild horse adoption event in Utah (St. George News)
  • One good thing about the heat wave? It let Salt Lake City map its urban heat islands (KUER)
  • Utah’s first steps to ‘clean’ hydrogen will rely on not-so-clean greenhouse gas (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • US-China climate talks brought goodwill, modest progress (Reuters)


  • Over 15,000 grandparents are raising their grandkids in Utah (KSL Newsradio)
  • Utah child care advocates are bracing for the fall as pandemic cash runs dry (KUER)
  • Conservation events across Utah hope to get more Latino families outdoors (KUER)


  • Hot takes on how to recognize heat sickness (Deseret News)
  • Mosquitoes spread malaria. These researchers want them to fight it instead (NPR)


  • These Utah housing markets most ‘at-risk’ for price correction due to affordability problems, low sales, firm says (Deseret News)
  • Why rent prices are dropping nationwide but not in Utah (KSL Newsradio)

National Headlines


  • 'Active club' hate groups are growing in the U.S. — and making themselves seen (NPR)
  • Fans of martial arts legend Bruce Lee fondly remember his life philosophy 50 years after his death (AP)
  • 11 mustangs die in US roundup in Nevada caught on video, showing horses with broken necks (AP)
  • This Arkansas town could become the epicenter of a US lithium boom (Wall Street Journal)
  • Nicholas Kristof: When children are bought and sold (New York Times)
  • Kevin Mitnick, hacker who once eluded authorities, is dead at 59 (New York Times)
  • On a somber day in New Zealand, the country’s national team offers a burst of light. Hannah Wilkinson’s goal provided not only a 1-0 upset over Norway in the women’s World Cup opener, but also secured the first World Cup victory in New Zealand history. (Washington Post)
  • New Jersey man commuted by Trump charged in new fraud scheme (Politico)


  • What Manchin and Huntsman said about running for president for a third party (Deseret News)
  • Young conservatives board the 'Trump Train' to 2024 (NPR)
  • Donald Trump loses bid for new trial in E. Jean Carroll abuse case (Reuters)
  • Trump's legal woes mount as trial dates and campaign calendar collide (New York Times)
  • Donald Trump could be charged with violating a civil rights law used in voting fraud cases, prosecutors suggested. (New York Times)
  • Inside Kevin McCarthy’s secret promise to expunge Trump’s record (Politico)
  • IRS steps toward a new free-file tax return system have both supporters and critics mobilizing (AP)
  • Biden pushes a strong role for unions in tech jobs, even as potential strikes are on the horizon (AP)
  • Xi Jinping praises Henry Kissinger in Beijing (Wall Street Journal)

Ukraine 🇺🇦

  • Russia’s Wagner mercenaries launch joint training with Belarusian military near Polish border (AP)
  • The pivotal mission in Kyiv's counteroffensive: Hunting for mines (Wall Street Journal)
  • Ukrainian children with cancer fight their own war within a war (New York Times)
  • Britain’s intelligence agency said Vladimir Putin acted to “save his skin” by making a deal with the Wagner leader. (New York Times)
  • Strikes hit Odessa port region for third night after Russia ends grain deal (Washington Post)
  • Ukraine begins firing U.S.-provided cluster munitions at Russian forces (Washington Post)


  • The winds of change. The Middle East is in the midst of a generational sea change. Could that mean more freedom and religious tolerance? (Deseret News)
  • Canadian wildfires hit Indigenous communities hard, threatening their land and culture (AP)
  • In a refugee camp in Kenya, food shortages left kids hungry even before Russia ended grain deal (AP)
  • Italian farmer battles frost, floods, heat and hail in epic year (Reuters)
  • Drought imperils Iraq's water buffalo and a child's way of life (Reuters)
  • Stranded in a strange land and waiting for death (New York Times)
  • On the map, nothing. On the ground, a hidden Maya city. (New York Times)

Number of the Day 

Number of the Day, July 20, 2023


News Releases

Romney, colleagues introduce crypto anti-money laundering bill to stop illicit transfers

In an effort to prevent money laundering and stop crypto-facilitated crime and sanctions violations, U.S. Senators Mitt Romney (R-UT), Jack Reed (D-RI), Mike Rounds (R-SD), and Mark Warner (D-VA) introduced the Crypto-Asset National Security Enhancement and Enforcement (CANSEE) Act. This bipartisan legislation requires decentralized finance (DeFi) services to meet the same anti-money laundering (AML) and economic sanctions compliance obligations as other financial companies, including centralized crypto trading platforms, casinos, and even pawn shops. It also modernizes key Treasury Department anti-money laundering authorities and sets new requirements to ensure that “crypto kiosks” don’t become a vector for laundering the proceeds of illicit activities. (Read More)

Romney, Hickenlooper introduce bill to promote competency-based education

U.S. Senators Mitt Romney (R-UT) and John Hickenlooper (D-CO) today introduced the Competency-Based Education Act of 2023, bipartisan legislation which will codify the Department of Education’s regulations governing the eligibility of competency-based education (CBE) programs. Western Governors University, a private, non-profit online university based in Millcreek, Utah, is recognized as a nationwide leader in CBE. The legislation would cement competency-based education in federal law, highlighting the importance of CBE programs—like those offered at Western Governors University—as a recognized, viable alternative to other traditional higher education programs. (Read More)

Lee to media: End the killer fame game

Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) and Rep. Andy Ogles (R-TN) introduced a resolution urging the media to engage in responsible and voluntary journalistic practices to deny mass public murderers the attention they seek and to minimize the potential ‘media contagion effect’ caused by sensationalistic reporting. The resolution aims to encourage a more balanced and ethical approach to reporting on violent incidents and to play a role in preventing the incitement of further acts of mass violence. (Read More)

Gold Cross Ambulance receives national accreditation

Gold Cross Ambulance, a leader in emergency response services in Utah, has received national accreditation from the Commission on Accreditation of Ambulance Services (CAAS). Gold Cross Ambulance received a perfect score during the process thus demonstrating its high commitment and devotion to patient care and safety. This accreditation places Gold Cross Ambulance Service in the top 1% of ambulance services in the country.  The ambulance provider serves Salt Lake, St George, Uintah, Utah, Washington, and Iron counties. Gold Cross is the only ambulance provider in the state to achieve the national distinction. (Read More)

The Other Side Village announces names of first permanent homes

It takes a village to build a village, and now The Other Side Village has named the first permanent cottages sponsored by community members that residents will soon call home. Today business leaders David Ibarra and Tyson Murdock unveiled “Live Ready Casa” and “Silverado Manor” as they toured the two homes they sponsored as part of the first phase of the project.“ (Read More)


Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-07-20 at 7.27.18 AM



  • One-day civil rights symposium for high school juniors and seniors — July 21, Mount Liberty College, Register here
  • Senate Judicial Confirmation Committee — July 27, 11:00 am.
  • Interim Days — Aug 7-10,
  • Municipal election filing period for cities using ranked choice voting — Aug. 8-15
  • 'Titan of Public Service' gala recognizing Senator Mitch McConnell and former Transportation and Labor Secretary Elaine Chao, hosted by the Orrin G. Hatch Foundation — Aug. 22, 7 p.m., Register here
  • Legislative Education and Mental Health Coordinating Council — Aug 23,
  • Municipal/Special election primary — Sept. 5
  • Interim Day — Sept. 18, Utah Tech University,
  • Interim Day — Oct 10-11,
  • Interim Day — Nov 14-15,
  • General election — Nov. 21

On This Day In History 

  • 356 - Alexander the Great is born in Macedonia
  • 1848 - Elizabeth Cady Stanton reads the “Declaration of Sentiments” at the Seneca Falls Convention
  • 1921 - Congresswoman Alice Mary Robertson becomes the first woman to preside over the floor of US House of Representatives.
  • 1944 - US President FDR nominated for an unprecedented 4th term at Democratic convention
  • 1953 - The United Nations Economic and Social Council votes to make UNICEF a permanent agency
  • 1969 - “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Neil Armstrong walks on the moon.
  • 1973 - Actor and martial-arts expert Bruce Lee dies at age 32
  • 1977 - A flash flood hits Johnstown, Pennsylvania, killing 84 people and causing million of dollars in damages
  • 2012 - Aurora movie theater shooting leaves 12 dead, 70 wounded

Quote of the Day

"Leadership and learning are indispensable to each other." 

—John F. Kennedy

On the Punny Side

My boss said he was going to fire the employee with the worst posture.

I have a hunch it’s going to be me.


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