A Show of 'Emotion'
Here's a message loud and clear for the Legislature. Your constituents don't like what you're doing. Let's look at the ballot initiative and referendum process and how much people hate the new tax reform law. Referendums are alive and well despite the Legislature doing everything possible to make it almost impossible for the public to speak its mind. Gathering some 117,000 signatures in at least 15 of the state's 29 counties is no small task. When Harmons Grocery offered its locations for signature gathering, Gov. Gary Herbert called them out, saying their objection was based on emotion, not facts, a Salt Lake Tribune article said. Other grocers then lined up in a show of "emotion." And the PTA has since joined in with polls showing two-thirds of Utahns want it repealed. Two provisions are at issue—raising the sales tax on food and changing how education is funded.
He Said What?
Slavery? Infanticide? Really? That's what we heard out of two gubernatorial candidate forums for Republicans, one by the Utah Eagle Forum and the other by the St. George Area Economic Development. While everyone knows that Democrats have no chance in hell of being elected statewide, two Trib stories just underlined that fact. Oh, and they also highlighted the extraordinary and curious influence of those Eagle women, not to mention rural Utah, which enjoys outsized power due to gerrymandering. Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox was happy to say that abortion would one day be viewed how slavery is now. And former House Speaker Greg Hughes said it's important to push back against liberal efforts to advance "infanticide." We get that this is an emotional issue, but it should also be based on facts. Hyperbole, apparently, wins the day.
Lee's 'Perfect' Prez
For those who fanaticized that Sen. Mike Lee had seen the messiah's halo fade around the head of President Donald Trump, sorry. Lee is a politician of a different cloth, a wily, libertarian-leaning attorney who knows how to play the odds. Yes, he railed on national TV about how bad the "briefing" on Iran was, but let's just stop there. Business Insider noted how Lee backtracked within hours to say how perfect the president is. That, of course, is Trump's word, but Lee "quite likes him." If we want to get into how progressive Lee is, just look at his latest legislation saying abortion is not health care. Pregnant women should be ignored, or at least forced to surrender their wombs because "Americans—especially those in the womb—deserve better," he said.