While I have no designs on ever running for political office, I do often spend time thinking about what I would do if I held the levers of power. ---
To that end, here is a partial list of appalling things I would do if I were Governor of Utah:
Declare war on and invade Wyoming -- Utah lawmakers love to sabre rattle against the federal government. But, that sort of Red Dawn fantasy is ludicrous. Why not pick a fight we have a reasonable chance of winning? Nevada would be tough because Cirque Du Soliel scares the crap out of me, and Colorado’s mountainous terrain would be a long military slog. Basically, Wyoming is just sitting there for the taking.
Wyoming is an easy target because their sparse population wouldn’t put up much of a fight.
Forcefully making Wyoming part of Utah is a good idea for a number of reasons. Their abundant oil and gas reserves would help boost our already booming economy. They’re also kindred spirits when it comes to concerns over federal land, as nearly half of the land in that state is owned by the federal government. We’d be able to use Yellowstone in our already great tourism campaign.
Plus, they have kick-butt fireworks.
Make no mistake, annexing Wyoming by force would help feed Utah’s seemingly insatiable thirst for things that go boom!
So, Wyoming had better watch its back.
Relocate the Utah Capitol to Utah County -- most of the center of gravity in Utah politics comes from Utah County anyway, so why not pick up the whole building and move it there?
UDOT already has pioneered moving large items into place through bridge replacements. Why not get their people on the case to move the Capitol building south of Point of the Mountain in one piece?
“But, Gov. Bryan,” you say. “That would be insanely expensive. How would you pay for it?”
Well, we’ve already taken over Wyoming, so we’d have a bunch of extra cash lying around. Plus, we wouldn’t need their Capitol building in Cheyenne anymore, so we could sell that for scrap to help fund our Capitol move.
Hell, why not move the Capitol around the state every year? How great would it be to have one Legislative session in Price followed by another in St. George? Let’s just put that sucker on wheels and move it around!
Indeed, having a mobile Capitol building would be advantageous if we were ever to suffer retaliation for our annexation of Wyoming.
Once a year, suspend all firearms laws in one Utah city for a week -- Utahns love their guns. Why not create a week-long festival where gun laws are null and void in one city?
Think of the tourism potential alone. Creating a place where gun lovers could go without the heavy hand of government for a week could bring millions of dollars to our already robust economy. Think of Sturgis bike week, but with guns! It would be like Somalia, but with running water and electricity!
Utah cities could bid on hosting the event every year. That competition alone could be highly entertaining.
Get rid of fry sauce -- even though I’ve lived in Utah for 17 years, I still do not understand the appeal of fry sauce. Was ketchup too “racy” for you people? Is that why you needed to add mayonnaise to it?
Well, eat up now, Utahns, because when I’m in charge, that stuff is gone!
Throw long-suffering Utah Democrats a bone -- once a year, it would be “Bring a Democrat to Work Day” in government agencies. State workers could bring their favorite Democrat to the office to show them what life is like in the majority.
We would have a mock legislative session, where Democrats would have a veto-proof majority in both houses and declare one Dem “Honorary Governor.” It would be similar to the “participation awards” every kid who plays little league baseball gets, even if they can’t hit or catch the ball. Let’s get the Dems out of left field (where you always stick the kids who don’t know what they’re doing) and let them shine. At the least, it could be adorable.
If I were feeling magnanimous, I’d even let Democrats pass and enact one of their legislative priorities that usually doesn’t have a chance in hell of getting through the Legislature.
Give the minority party a taste of success and they might aspire to getting Democrats from outside Salt Lake County elected.
Now, you may look at this list and say, “Bryan, you don’t understand how the legislative process works. You can’t do any of the things you’re proposing.”
To that I say, “Shut up! If I want your input, I’ll ask.”
This post originally appeared at UtahPolicy.com. Bryan Schott is managing editor of UtahPolicy.com and UtahPulse.com. He is an award-winning journalist who has covered politics in Utah for more than 15 years. He also blogs at SchottHappens.com.