9 candidates (so far) in race to replace Sen. Karen Mayne; US House to hold vote on rules for the next 2 years and passage is not guaranteed
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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 editor@utahpolicy.com.


Situational Analysis | Jan. 9, 2023

It's Monday and National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day. It's also National Apricot Day, which is weird, because apricot trees most definitely aren't "in season" in January.

Be in the Know

  • After 15 rounds, Kevin McCarthy finally got enough votes to become Speaker of the US House early Saturday morning. The late-night C-SPAN viewing was good political theater, complete with McCarthy and Gaetz having a moment and a little later, Rep. Mike Rogers of Alabama lunged at Gaetz and needed to be restrained. (Rogers has apologized.) After McCarthy was sworn in, he then swore in the other 434 Representatives en masse, close to 2:00 am. The House will reconvene today for a vote on the rules for the next two years. Some Republican Representatives have already stated they're voting no.  

  • There are now 9 candidates in the special election for Senator Karen Mayne's seat: Kelly Bush, Corey Rushton, Jonathan Lopez, Rep. Karen Kwan, Jay Blain, Charles Henderson, Jake Fitisemanu, Brett Garner, and Sophia Hawes-Tingey. Filing closes Thursday, Jan. 12, at 5 pm.


Together, We Can Better Support Women in Business

Whether you’re a woman starting a business or looking to elevate your career, Inspire In Utah is dedicated to providing you with the resources to help on your journey. Find funding, training, and even inspirational stories in our dedicated resource center.


Utah Headlines


  • Small community of Enoch looks for a way forward after ‘surreal’ tragedy (Deseret News)
  • Utah National Guard honors 45 citizen soldiers prior to their year-long deployment (ABC4)


  • What Utah GOP congressmen are saying about Kevin McCarthy winning House speakership (Deseret News)
  • Utah is one of the states targeting transgender health care in first bills of 2023. More than two dozen bills seeking to restrict transgender health care access have been pre-filed in 11 states. (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • What child advocates are pushing for this legislative session (ABC4)
  • House leadership on the upcoming legislative session (ABC4)
  • Utah Supreme Court grants legislature's appeal in redistricting case (Fox13)
  • Utah lawmakers may crack down on noisy tailpipes and bring back 'PhotoCop' (Fox13)
  • Saving the Great Salt Lake with host Jason Perry and guests Joel Ferry, Kim Shelley and Brian Steed (Hinckley Report)


  • Outdoor Retailer plans big 'homecoming' as it returns to Utah (KSL)


  • ‘New frontier': USU biochemists’ discovery lands them a spot in prestigious academic journal (KSL)
  • The pandemic changed the way we view education. Families are more open to different types of schools in the aftermath of COVID-19 (Deseret News)


  • ‘It’s a marathon, not a race’ — what Utah’s recent snowstorms mean for the Colorado River. The state’s smaller reservoirs may rise, but bigger ones like Lake Powell need years of above-normal conditions to recover. (Salt Lake Tribune)


  • Husband on porn, wife on Prozac. Secret pornography use has an impact on marriages, even when not spoken about openly (Deseret News)


National Headlines


  • Playing Risk made cold-war kids masters of an unruly globe. A board game showed us that alliances have limits, odds don’t predict the future, and it’s fool’s work to invade Ukraine. (Wall Street Journal)
  • Russia’s Wagner group ramping up operations outside of Ukraine, U.S. warns. Internal documents show the private military group is expanding in Europe and Africa. (Politico)


  • Constitutional scholar Noah Feldman weighs in on the current state of democracy (Deseret News)
  • Supreme Court set for busy winter (ABC4)
  • Biden flies in to López Obrador’s new airport for summit (AP)
  • Kemp done being underestimated, aims to steer GOP past Trump (AP)
  • Sasse officially leaves Senate (The Hill)
  • Republicans are temporarily down a Senate seat with Sasse’s retirement (Washington Post)
  • GOP Rep. Nancy Mace blasts Matt Gaetz as a ‘fraud’ for fundraising off McCarthy Speaker votes (The Hill)

Ukraine 🇺🇦 

  • Ukraine school spurns Russian claim of troops killed there (AP)
  • Ukraine bolsters defences in east as Russia sends waves of attacks (Reuters)
  • Without hesitation, Ukraine goes toe to toe with Russia in Bakhmut (New York Times)


  • Mexico’s delicate dance with democracy (Deseret News)
  • Pro-Bolsonaro rioters storm Brazil’s top government offices (AP)
  • Security forces regain control after Bolsonaro supporters storm Brazil's Congress (NPR)
  • Lula promises prosecution in aftermath of Brazil capital insurrection (Washington Post)

News Releases

Utah’s consumer sentiment rises in December

Utah’s consumer sentiment increased from 64.1 in November to 68.7  in December, according to the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute’s Survey of Utah Consumers. A similar  survey by the University of Michigan also found sentiment rose from November (56.8) to December  (59.7) among Americans as a whole. The Gardner Institute has now measured Utah Consumer  Sentiment for 27 consecutive months. The December 2022 Index for both Utah and the US increased  over the prior month, suggesting a slightly better outlook. (Read More)

Utah Taxpayers Association annual legislative conference to be held Tuesday

As part of the Legislative Outlook Conference, elected officials, top policymakers and legislative leaders will preview the 2023 Legislative session and related tax issues. In addition, speakers will be discussing taxes and other tax policy issues in Utah. The conference will be Tuesday, January 10th, from 9 am - noon at the Grand America. (Read More)

Salt Lake Chamber and Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute to host Utah Economic Outlook & Public Policy Summit

The Salt Lake Chamber, Utah’s largest and longest-serving statewide business association, will host the annual Utah Economic Outlook & Public Policy Summit with the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute on January 12, 2023, at the Salt Lake Marriott Downtown at City Creek.

This event is the state’s premier economic forecasting and public policy showcase and will be attended by notable policy and academic thought leaders from across the state. The Summit presents an unrivaled opportunity for attendees to gain insights on the future of Utah’s economy and the business community’s policy priorities for the upcoming legislative session. (Read More)


Number of the Day

Number of the Day, Jan 9, 2023



Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-01-09 at 7.23.59 AM




  • Utah Taxpayers Association annual legislative conference — Jan. 10, 9 am-noon, Grand America, Register here
  • Utah Economic Outlook and Public Policy Summit with the Salt Lake Chamber — Jan. 12, 2023, Salt Lake City Marriott, 8 am - noon, Register here
  • Legislative session begins, Jan. 17, 2023, le.utah.gov

On This Day In History

  • 1793 - First successful balloon flight completed in the U.S.

  • 1811 - The first women’s golf tournament is held at Musselburgh Links Golf Club in Scotland. The first-place winner received a fishing basket and the 2nd and 3rd winners got handkerchiefs.

  • 1859 - Carrie Chapman Catt is born. She was the president of the National American Woman Suffrage Association when the 19th Amendment was ratified in 1920

  • 1897 - Felisa Rincon De Gautier is born. She was appointed Mayor of San Juan in 1946 where she served for more than 20 years.

  • 1913 - Richard M. Nixon is born

  • 1935 - Earl G. Graves is born. In 1970, he founded Black Enterprise magazine.

  • 2007 - Steve Jobs unveils the first iPhone

  • 2022 - Bob Saget dies of head trauma at 65

Wise Words

“To network effectively, find a common interest—and don’t assume it is you.”

—Earl G. Graves

On the Punny Side

What’s the difference between ignorance and apathy?

I don’t know and I don’t care.


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