21-yr-old Air National Guardsman arrested in document leak; perfect 10 in gymnastics meet; volunteers needed for flood mitigation
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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 | April 14, 2023

It's Friday and it's cold. It's also National Gardening Day, but it's too darn cold to plant. 🪴 The average frost-free day along the Wasatch Front is Mother's Day, but who knows this year. 

What You Need to Know

  • The 2024 campaign for US Senate has begun in Utah, with House Speaker Brad Wilson launching an exploratory committee that allows him to fundraise and spend money. He told KSL's Inside Sources that "Washington needs to be more like Utah" and that Utah needs a fighter in DC.  Earlier this week, Senator Mitt Romney filed paperwork with the FEC that also allows him to raise and spend money on a re-election campaign. Contrary to some rumors, Rep. John Curtis is not running for the Senate. 

  • A 21-yr-old member of the Massachusetts Air National Guard was arrested yesterday and accused of leaking classified documents online. Jack Teixeira served as a member of the guard’s 102nd Intelligence Wing. His alleged leaks—which included details about the Ukrainian war and U.S. intelligence capabilities—have raised questions about the wide dissemination of classified information and led Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to order a review of intelligence management procedures. Teixeira will appear in court later this morning. 

Rapid Roundup


Utah Headlines

Political news

  • Rep. John Curtis clarifies whether he’s thinking about running for Senate in 2024 (Deseret News)
  • Effort to send new Utah flag to statewide referendum fails, state says (KSL)
  • Ammon Gruwell: Approval voting allows voters to express themselves more fully (Salt Lake Tribune)

General Utah news

  • ‘What we have is working,’ Gov. Cox says of Utah flood mitigation efforts (KSL)
  • Millions of sandbags sent to Utah areas that need them, Cox says (Fox13)
  • Abby Cox and Sheri Dew on mentors, what’s scary and showing up (Deseret News)
  • LDS President Russell Nelson wins praise, peace prize as ‘tireless’ champion of ‘radical inclusivity’ (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Historically Black college honors President Nelson with first Gandhi-King-Mandela Peace Prize (Deseret News)
  • Utah County family creates gift boxes for grieving families (ABC4)
  • April marks 40 years since massive landslide, flood waters destroyed Thistle (Fox13)


  • How to be happy at work in the time of the Great Resignation (Deseret News
  • Gail Miller says MLB pursuit completes the circle on her family’s lifelong connection to baseball (Deseret News)
  • New law allows immigrant professionals to become licensed in Utah (KSL)


  • Their Utah County school removed all pride flags. Now these LGBTQ+ kids are fighting back. (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Can AI help make Utah schools safer? (Deseret News)



  • More wives, husbands have similar earnings. But who’s doing the housework? Pew report finds more married men and women have similar earnings, but women do heavy lifting at home (Deseret News)


  • What are the best and worst states for children’s health care? Utah ranked 16th overall on the list. (Deseret News)


  • Park City affordable housing project moves forward, despite safety concerns (KPCW)
  • For Utah renters, escaping abuse can come at a cost (KSL TV)

National Headlines


  • Zombies, Hitler, angels and adultery: Lori Vallow Daybell’s former best friend describes descent into fringe beliefs (Deseret News)
  • Virginia Norwood, an aerospace pioneer who invented the scanner that has been used to map and study the earth from space for more than 50 years, has died at 96. (New York Times)
  • US retail sales fall 1% amid high inflation, rising rates (AP)
  • Tech consultant arrested in San Francisco killing of Cash App creator (New York Times)
  • Discord member details how documents leaked from closed chat group (Washington Post)
  • Russia’s commando units gutted by Ukraine war, U.S. leak shows (Washington Post)


  • Supreme Court won’t block $6B student debt relief settlement (AP)
  • The conundrum of the DeSantis base: Pro-Trump and anti-Trump voters (New York Times)
  • Dianne Feinstein faces down Democratic firestorm (The Hill)
  • Trump answered questions for more than 7 hours in New York fraud lawsuit (The Hill)
  • The Pence-Trump divide deepens, this time over guns (Politico)

Ukraine 🇺🇦

  • China vows not to sell arms to any party in Ukraine war (AP)
  • Russia races to pass tough new military draft rules, banning conscripts from leaving (NPR)

News Releases

Utah named state with best economic outlook for 16th year in a row

Gov. Spencer Cox, President J. Stuart Adams and Speaker Brad Wilson issued the following statement regarding Utah being ranked as the number one state for economic outlook by Rich States, Poor States: ALEC-Laffer State Economic Competitiveness Index for the 16th year in a row: 

“Utah’s economy continues to lead the nation. Strategic policies, smart fiscal decisions and forward-thinking reserve funds, combined with the hard work of Utahns across the state, have placed Utah on top once again." (Read More)

Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson denies S.B. 31 State Flag Amendments Referendum

On Thursday, Lt. Gov. Deidre Henderson denied S.B. 31 State Flag Amendments Referendum after the sponsors failed to meet the signature requirements by the April 12 deadline. The referendum won’t appear on the November ballot. 

Supporters needed 134,298 signatures. Clerks validated 21,030 signatures and rejected 2,117 signatures. The sponsors submitted an additional 28,449 signatures that have not been verified. (Read More)

Salt Lake County Mayor declares state of emergency for flooding due to spring runoff

Late Wednesday evening, Salt Lake County Mayor Wilson declared a state of emergency in response to the flooding caused by the high level of spring runoff in the county. Salt Lake County has experienced a historic, record-breaking snowpack, resulting in extremely high levels of water flowing through our rivers and streams. On Tuesday, Emigration Creek flooded past its banks in multiple locations in Salt Lake City and the Emigration Metro Township, spurring round-the-clock emergency response from both municipalities and Salt Lake County.  Hundreds of volunteers showed up last night to support their community by filling and placing sandbags in a human chain along the creek bed at higher elevations and along 1700 South in Salt Lake City. (Read More)

Utah Valley University announces 2023 honorary degree recipients

Utah Valley University (UVU) officials announced today that Elaine S. Dalton, Scott C. Keller, and Duff Thompson will receive honorary doctorate degrees at the university’s commencement on May 4, 2023, along with the commencement keynote speaker, Brandon Sanderson.

Sanderson will receive an honorary degree in humane letters, Dalton will receive a degree in public service, and both Keller and Thompson will receive degrees in business. The honorary degrees will be presented during the commencement ceremony at 6:30 p.m. in the UCCU Center on UVU’s Orem Campus. (Read More)


Number of the Day

Number of the Day, Apr 14, 2023-1


Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-04-14 at 7.20.29 AM



  • UVU Conference on Domestic Violence — April 14, 9:00 am-4:00 pm, Register here
  • Teen Girls Experiencing Increased Sadness and Violence with Utah Women and Leadership Project — April 25, 12:00-1:15 pm via Zoom, Register here
  • United Utah Party State Convention — April 29, 10:00 am-12:00 pm, Lehi High School with keynote speakers Teri McCabe and Jay Mcfarland
  • Mount Liberty College Spring Youth Seminar on The Virginian — May 6, 9 am-7 pm, Register Here

On This Day In History 

  • 1775 - The first American abolition society is founded in Philadelphia.
  • 1818 - Webster’s American Dictionary of the English Language is printed.
  • 1865 - John Wilkes Booth shoots Abraham Lincoln in the head. 
  • 1866 - Anne Sullivan Macy is born today. She was Helen Keller’s teacher. 
  • 1912 - The RMS Titanic hits an iceberg at 11:40 pm, sinks a few hours later
  • 1935 - ‘Black Sunday’ Dust Bowl storm strikes, kicking up millions of tons of dirt.
  • 1975 - Operation ‘Baby Lift’ concludes after flying 2,600 South Vietnamese orphans to the US.
  • 1983 - Ronald Reagan signs $165 billion Social Security rescue.
  • 1988 - Soviets agree to withdraw from Afghanistan
  • 2003 - The Human Genome Project is completed with 99% of the human genome sequenced to an accuracy of 99.99%.
  • 2021 - Bernie Madoff dies in prison of natural causes at age 82

Quote of the Day

"A tumultuous debate about social security has raged for more than two decades in this country; but there has been one point that has won universal agreement: The social security system must be preserved."

—Ronald Reagan, upon signing the 1983 Social Security bill

On the Punny Side

I once swallowed a book of synonyms.

It gave me thesaurus throat I’ve ever had.


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