6 Republicans now in race to replace Chris Stewart; Mayor Erin Mendenhall and challenger Rocky Anderson answer questions about homelessness
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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 | June 12, 2023

It's Monday and World Day Against Child Labor

What You Need to Know

  • It was a humdinger of a Friday afternoon news dump. Former president Trump was indicted not on 7 charges, but on 37 federal charges. Federal prosecutors say Trump didn't just hold on to documents but tried to hide them and failed to turn them over when asked. Senator Mitt Romney released a statement saying, in part, that "Mr. Trump brought these charges upon himself." Senator Mike Lee said it was an act of "absolute disrespect" that "echoes despotism." 

  • Another 3 Republicans have jumped in the race to replace Rep. Chris Stewart: R. Quin Denning, Remy Bubba Kush and Scott Allen Hatfield. They join Greg Hughes, Bruce Hough and Becky Edwards. January Walker has also filed with the United Utah Party. The GOP convention for the special election will be held Saturday, June 24. 

Rapid Roundup


Honoring Living Color

Utah Business aims to bring awareness to the changing business landscape in Utah and create a foundation upon which further recruiting efforts can be built. Are you aware of an individual who has made it their mission to attract and foster diversity and inclusion initiatives throughout the state of Utah? Make your nomination by June 16.


Utah Headlines

Political news

  • How the summer of 2023 will shape the 2024 elections (Deseret News)
  • Utah lawmakers, tech leaders discuss potential regulation of artificial intelligence (KSL)
  • Former Governor Gary Herbert on the 2024 presidential field (ABC4)
  • The IUP Panel on Bible bans, Pride bus and the special election (ABC4)
  • Bill could grant San Juan Southern Paiute Tribe its own reservation (KSL)
  • Q&A: What Mayor Erin Mendenhall thinks SLC has gotten right on homelessness, and what she would have done differently (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Q&A: Inside mayoral candidate Rocky Anderson’s plan for fighting homelessness in SLC (Salt Lake Tribune)

General Utah news

  • Deseret News High School Sports Awards: First-ever ceremony honors 152 athletes across all sports (Deseret News)
  • Utah animal shelters reported as 77% ‘no-kill’ (Deseret News)
  • Gun deaths hit record high in the US; most in Utah are suicides (KSL)
  • Utah teen stripped of pageant win offered back original 'Miss Lehi Teen' title, opportunities (KUTV)
  • 100 lbs of Meth reportedly found in truck bed by K9 in Grand County (ABC4)
  • Shots fired at ‘large party’ in Farmington, investigation underway (ABC4)


  • Will Apple’s Vision Pro be a boon or society’s doom? (Deseret News)
  • Ogden leaders OK airport reinvestment area to spur development, investment (Standard-Examiner)
  • USU research highlights perceptions of gender bias in the Utah workplace (Cache Valley Daily)
  • Workers want to stay remote, prompting an office real estate crisis (Washington Post)
  • Children as young as 12 work legally on farms, despite years of efforts to change law (NPR)


  • How Utah adopted ‘the most inclusive in-state tuition policy in the nation’ for refugees (Deseret News)
  • ‘The future of STEM’: 4 Southern Utah students thrive at International Science and Engineering Fair (St. George News)


  • A portrait of the Colorado River (Deseret News)
  • Great Salt Lake brine shrimp population increases as lake reaches healthy levels (KSL TV)
  • Plan for development on former uranium mining site in Leeds alarms activists (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Ahead of new Colorado River talks, governments and tribes weigh in on the future (UPR)


  • Baby boom or bust (Deseret News)
  • The case for hanging out with people who aren't your age (Deseret News)
  • 'Anti-dopamine parenting' can curb a kid's craving for screens or sweets (NPR)


  • FDA panel recommends RSV shot for infants. (Deseret News)
  • The science behind mosquito bites and how to have a bite-free summer (Deseret News)
  • New discoveries in U. Health study find brain mechanism that potentially causes anxiety (KSL)
  • Understanding health care costs — and why knowing what something costs isn’t enough (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Utah ranks among lowest for mammography screening rates (KSL)
  • Gratitude really is good for you. Here’s what the science shows. (New York Times)
  • 10,000 steps a day was a myth. Here are 7 tips to consider instead (Washington Post)
  • Gaslighting is emotional abuse. Here’s how to recognize and stop it. (Washington Post)

National Headlines


  • The beauty of a ‘walk and talk’. Taking a stroll with someone is a wonderful way to strengthen your social connections. (New York Times)
  • Tens of Thousands of Dead Fish Wash Ashore on Gulf Coast in Texas (New York Times)
  • Fentanyl has taken a record toll on the Army. Families demand answers. (Washington Post)
  • The Great Grift: How billions in COVID-19 relief aid was stolen or wasted (AP)


  • National Archives refutes claims Trump had two years to go through presidential records in rare public statement (CNN)
  • Trump indictment shows critical evidence came from one of his own lawyers (New York Times)
  • Trump’s Miami court date brings fears of violence, rally plans (Washington Post)
  • Mike Pence poses 2024’s elemental question: The Constitution or Trump? (Washington Post)
  • Trump is 'toast' if classified records case is proven, ex-attorney general Bill Barr says (Reuters)
  • Bill Barr rips Trump over defense on secret documents (Politico)
  • Trump and his allies escalate attacks on criminal case as history-making court appearance approaches (AP)
  • Why Trump was charged on secret documents and Clinton, Pence were not (Washington Post)
  • Senate GOP leaders break with House on Trump indictment (The Hill)
  • US aims to rejoin UN scientific and educational organization to push back on China (AP)
  • George Soros Hands Control to His 37-Year-Old Son: ‘I’m More Political’ (Wall Street Journal)

Ukraine 🇺🇦

  • Political risks rise for Putin as Ukraine’s counteroffensive begins (Washington Post)
  • Russia claims it blew up advanced Ukrainian tank, but video shows its helicopter attacked a tractor (AP)
  • Ukraine claims recapture of 4th village in eastern Donetsk as counteroffensive operations roll on (AP)
  • How the US Patriot Missile became a hero of the Ukraine war, 40 years after it was brought into service (Wall Street Journal)


  • Scotland’s ex-leader arrested in party finances probe (Wall Street Journal)
  • Silvio Berlusconi, Italian leader and billionaire media mogul, dies at 86 (Washington Post)
  • U.S. seeks to expand developing world’s influence at United Nations (Washington Post)

News Releases

Romney statement on reports of indictment

U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) today issued the following statement on reports of the indictment of former President Trump:

“Like all Americans, Mr. Trump is entitled to the presumption of innocence. The government has the burden of proving its charges beyond a reasonable doubt and securing a unanimous verdict by a South Florida jury. By all appearances, the Justice Department and special counsel have exercised due care, affording Mr. Trump the time and opportunity to avoid charges that would not generally have been afforded to others.

“Mr. Trump brought these charges upon himself by not only taking classified documents, but by refusing to simply return them when given numerous opportunities to do so. These allegations are serious and if proven, would be consistent with his other actions offensive to the national interest, such as withholding defensive weapons from Ukraine for political reasons and failing to defend the Capitol from violent attack and insurrection.”

Romney, colleagues introduce bipartisan bill to reduce dependence on China for critical minerals

U.S. Senator Mitt Romney (R-UT) today joined Senators Gary Peters (D-MI), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, and James Lankford (R-OK) in introducing bipartisan legislation to reduce the United States’ reliance on China and other adversarial nations for critical minerals. Critical minerals and rare earth metals are used to manufacture electric vehicle batteries, military equipment, and other technology that is vital to American economic competitiveness and homeland security. China is currently the largest source for more than half of the critical minerals on the U.S. Geological Survey’s 2022 list that the United States imports, such as lithium and cobalt. The senators’ bill would address this threat to our manufacturing supply chains by creating an intergovernmental task force to identify opportunities to increase domestic production and recycling of critical minerals. (Read More)

USBE seeking public input on Utah’s Core Standards

The Utah State Board of Education is seeking public input on Utah’s Core Standards. These standards include, but are not limited to: English Language Arts, Mathematics, and Driver Education. Public input will be accepted through July 9. This is a great opportunity to inform future changes to the standards as the Utah State Board of Education conducts revisions in the coming years. All interested persons are invited to provide input by filling out this form. (Read More)

Lee introduces ARTICLE ONE Act to reclaim Congressional power

Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT) introduced the ARTICLE ONE Act, a bill that would reclaim significant legislative powers delegated to the executive branch by the National Emergencies Act of 1976. When Congress passed this act in 1976, it gave the president of the United States the ability to exercise unilateral power like a king. Now, there are more than forty ongoing national emergencies that were never approved by Congress and have no expiration date. (Read More)


Number of the Day

Number of the Day, June 12, 2023


Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-06-12 at 6.32.46 AM



  • Interim Days — June 13-14, Utah State Capitol, le.utah.gov
  • Bellwether International Symposium on Bridging the Religious Divide with the Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy — June 16, 9:00 am-3:30 pm, Little America, Register here
  • Municipal election filing period for cities using ranked choice voting — August 8-15
  • Municipal/Special election primary — Sept 5
  • General election — Nov 21

On This Day In History

  • 1924 - George H.W. Bush is born
  • 1929 - Anne Frank born
  • 1931 - Al Capone is indicted on 5,000 counts of prohibition and perjury
  • 1942 - Anne Frank receives a diary for her birthday.
  • 1963 - Civil rights leader Medgar Evers gunned down in his driveway by a white supremacist. During WWII, Evers was in the US Army and participated in the Normandy invasion.
  • 1967 - The US Supreme Court rules unanimously in the Loving v. Virginia case that laws banning interracial marriage are unconstitutional.
  • 1987 - Ronald Reagan delivers the famous line: “Mr. Gorbachev - tear down this wall!”
  • 1994 - Nicole Brown Simpson and Ron Goldman murdered
  • 2016 - Terrorist attack on Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florid
  • 2018 - Singapore Summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump - it’s the first time a North Korean leader and an incumbent US President have ever met

Quote of the Day

"Marriage is one of the ‘basic civil rights of man', fundamental to our very existence and survival. …Under our Constitution, the freedom to marry, or not marry, a person of another race resides with the individual and cannot be infringed by the State."

Loving v. Virginia ruling

On the Punny Side

I have a pet manatee named Hugh. I built him a house.

It’s a habitat for Hugh manatee.


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