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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


Brooklyn Hughes Roemer is taking over for Holly Richardson this week while Holly is on vacation.

Situational Analysis | June 30, 2023

It's Friday and National Food Truck Day. What's your favorite?

What You Need to Know

  • The Supreme Court rejected affirmative action in U.S. college admissions. In a 6–3 ruling, the court's decision will completely reshape admissions at colleges with race-conscious programs. “The student must be treated based on his or her experiences as an individual — not on the basis of race," writes Chief Justice Roberts in the majority opinion.
  • The Supreme Court strengthened protections for workplace religious rights in a 9–0 ruling. Employers can no longer deny religious accommodation requests, like working on the Sabbath, unless it "would result in substantial increased costs in relation to the conduct of its particular business," writes Justice Samuel Alito in the majority opinion.

Rapid Relevance


Refugees are Family

Refugee families add to the cultural, economic and social fabric of our communities.Utahn refugees bring resilience, diverse perspectives, and a deep appreciation for the opportunities provided by their new home. Learn more and become a welcomer. #WorldRefugeeDay


Utah Headlines

Political news

  • Why Utah's 4 congressmen believe inaction on the debt ceiling was never an option (Deseret News)
  • Marco Rubio claims he has heard ‘firsthand’ accounts of UFO from high-ranking government officials (Deseret News)
  • The Supreme Court just unanimously ruled for a religious worker. But his fight is not over (Deseret News)
  • Sen. Mike Lee and Sen. Mitt Romney voice support for Supreme Court decision on affirmative action (Deseret News)
  • Utah leaders back from trade mission to Europe. What was accomplished? (KSL Newsradio)

Election news

  • Becky Edwards says she’s gotten enough signatures to qualify for the special election ballot (KSL Newsradio)
  • Celeste Maloy voting records show Republican affiliation when she filed congressional candidacy (KSL Newsradio)
  • Will privacy be lost when change in Utah voter identification laws begin? (Fox13)

General Utah news

  • Why Sapporo’s bid for the 2030 Winter Games is ‘still alive’ (Deseret News)
  • Domestic violence service providers in Utah to see funding cuts (KSL Newsradio)
  • Zion National Park reopens the Narrows, but risks remain (Salt Lake Tribune)


  • Utah’s rebranding under newly acquired Bed, Bath & Beyond moniker (Deseret News)
  • Homeowners paid big $ for solar-powered system, say Utah installer will not finish job (KSL TV)
  • Lindsay Milliken and Josh T. Smith: The U.S. government can help solve labor shortages today. Why won’t it? (Salt Lake Tribune)
  •  A fantastical idea just might be our solution to viable energy storage (UPR)
  • How a new pilot training facility in SLC will have a ‘profound impact’ on Delta Air Lines (Salt Lake Tribune)


  • A Utah man used to critique tacos. Now he owns a restaurant where they’re made from scratch (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Here's everything coming and going on Netflix in July (KSL)
  • Taylor Swift’s The Eras Tour could be the 1st tour to rake in $1 billion
     (Deseret News)


  • What should America do about the summer slide? (Deseret News)
  • A Utah teen had sex at school. His parents sued the district and lost (Salt Lake Tribune


  • Provo is going underground to store millions of gallons of water (KSL Newsradio)
  • The West’s electric grid is stretched, and extreme events could knock the lights out (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Utah governor re-ups call for prayer over water, this time to give thanks (Deseret News)


  • Television today is full of destructively dysfunctional families — are they accurate portrayals or cautionary tales? (Deseret News)
  • Zion National Park plans for busy 4th of July weekend (KSL Newsradio)
  • Resources available to guide ‘sandwich generation’ through caregiving role (KSL TV)


  • Does the artificial sweetener aspartame cause cancer? (Deseret News)
  • Experts say there’s a ‘slim chance’ malaria cases spread to Utah (KSL TV)
  • Study cites skin cancer rates in Utah as being the highest in the country (Fox13)
  • BMI alone will no longer be treated as the go-to measure for weight management. Here’s why (St. George News)
  • Cancer vaccine doesn’t prevent cancer — it treats it (KSL Newsradio)


  • Thousands of Utahns became homeless for the first time last year. Here’s why (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Robert Gehrke: We know how to curb homelessness — we just need the political will to do it (Salt Lake Tribune)
  • Utah's housing shortage shrinks thanks to new units, but it may be short-lived (KUTV)
  • Contractor explains mechanics of building on steep terrain after Utah's home-destroying landslides (KUTV)

National Headlines


  • Presumed human remains found in Titan submersible wreckage (Deseret News)
  • What could break as interest rates rise? (Reuters)
  • Why air travel Is a mess ahead of July Fourth (Wall Street Journal)
  • Expect a hot, smoky summer in much of America. Here’s why you’d better get used to it (AP)
  • Shattered nerves, sleepless nights: Pickleball noise is driving everyone nuts (New York Times)
  • Texas abortion ban led to almost 10,000 additional live births (The Hill)
  • A major UPS strike is looming — here’s what that means for your packages (The Hill)


  • McCarthy confronts a spending mess that will test his speakership (Politico)
  • Biden admin finalizes student debt ‘safety net’ as repayment looms (Politico)
  • ‘This is not a normal court’: Biden slams Supreme Court ruling on affirmative action (New York Times)
  • Supreme Court expected to rule on student loan forgiveness case (Washington Post)

Ukraine 🇺🇦

  • Max Boot: Don’t second-guess the Ukrainian counteroffensive. It’s just starting (Washington Post)
  • Mike Pence makes surprise trip to Ukraine (Washington Post)
  • Russian general is believed to be detained in aftermath of Wagner mutiny (AP)
  • EU leaders to assess Putin’s position in talks with NATO and Ukraine chiefs at summit (AP)


  • Greece migrant tragedy: coastguard rope capsized boat, survivor accounts say (Reuters)
  • Bitter resignation of UK minister underlines divide in Sunak's party (Reuters)
  • Turkmenistan opens elaborate ‘smart city’ development (AP)
  • Canada pressured by allies to up military spending (Reuters)
  • Chinese balloon used American tech to spy on Americans (Wall Street Journal)
  • Officer in fatal shooting of teenager detained on homicide charges as protests continue (New York Times)

News Releases

One Utah Health Collaborative launches Innovation Advisory Board with 3M Health Care's Dan McMaster as chairman

Today the One Utah Health Collaborative (the Collaborative) announced the formation of Utah’s first healthcare Innovation Advisory Board. The Collaborative was launched by Gov. Spencer Cox last year to address healthcare costs in the state of Utah. It was founded on the principles of innovation and collaboration. (Read more)

Congressman Blake Moore applauds new $24.5 million RAISE grant to improve Wasatch Front area transit

Congressman Blake Moore (UT-01) applauded the announcement that the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) awarded a $24.5 million Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) discretionary grant for 15 Wasatch Front region projects that will improve transit access. The Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT) applied for the grant in close collaboration with Mountainland Association of Governments (MAG), Utah Transit Authority (UTA), Wasatch Front Regional Council (WFRC), and local communities. Residents will benefit from pedestrian and bicycle improvements made around 10 light rail stations and 13 bus stops serving our region. (Read more)


Number of the Day

Number of the Day, June 30, 2023


Tweet of the Day

Screenshot 2023-06-29 at 3.30.02 PM



  • 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
  • Municipal/Special election primary — Sept. 5
  • General election — Nov. 21

On This Day In History

  • 1702 - Elizabeth Timothy is born. The colonial immigrant became the first female newspaper editor and publisher in America. After the death of her father, Elizabeth assumed his role in printing the South Carolina Gazette under contract with Benjamin Franklin.

  • 1883 - Dorothy Tilly is born. She was a civil rights reformer who devoted her life to reforming southern race relations.

  • 1899 - Margaret Byrd Rawson is born. An educator and researcher, she identified and treated reading disorders including dyslexia.

  • 1906 - US Congress passes the Meat Inspection Act and the Pure Food and Drug Act; these laws owe much to the expose journalism of the period (Upton Sinclair's 'The Jungle' in particular).

  • 1934 - Hitler orders the assassination of hundreds of members of his own political party in the Night of the Long Knives.

  • 1982 - The ERA fails, 3 states short of ratification.

  • 2014 - Burwell v Hobby Lobby is decided in a 5-4 vote.

  • 2021 - Donald Rumsfeld dies at age 88.

Quote of the Day

"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it."

—Upton Sinclair

On the Punny Side

To the guy who invented zero ...

Thanks for nothing.


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