Today's Featured Articles:

Situational Awareness

Good morning from Salt Lake City and TGIF!


  TICK TOCK  

6 days to the 6th special session (8/20/2020)

41 days to the 1st Congressional District debate (9/24/2020)

46 days to the Utah gubernatorial debate (9/28/2020)

48 days to the Utah Attorney General debate (10/01/2020)

54 days to the Vice Presidential debate at the University of Utah (10/07/2020)

59 days to the 4th Congressional District debate (10/12/2020)

62 days to the 3rd Congressional District debate (10/15/2020)

66 days to the 2nd Congressional District debate (10/19/2020)

81 days to the 2020 election (11/3/2020)

159 days to inauguration day (01/20/2021)

164 days to the start of the 2021 Utah Legislature (1/25/2021)


Here are the stories you need to pay attention to this morning:

  • Trump's all-out assault on vote-by-mail.
  • Legislative Republicans back off a plan some were calling "backdoor vouchers."
  • Teachers in the Granite School District say they don't feel safe returning to class, but they don't have enough support for a strike.

FRIDAY TRIVIA

Break out your maps! This week's question comes from Zachary Zundel:

Ten political entities legally share sovereignty within the boundaries of the State of Utah. Utah and the United States are two of the ten. Name four of the remaining eight entities.

Email your guesses to me at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We'll select a winner at random from the correct entries. 

Good luck!


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Read: Top local news | National News Briefing


Today at Utah Policy

Teachers in the Granite School District say they're afraid to return to the classroom, but union officials say there's not a 'critical mass' of support for a strike yet

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
More than half of teachers surveyed in the Granite School District say there’s no amount…

Anatomy of a smear. Right-wing conspiracy site pushes false story targeting Mitt Romney

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
On Wednesday, right-wing social media exploded with the news that Utah Sen. Mitt Romney…

Republican candidates for governor spent nearly $4 million on advertising ahead of the primary

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
The Republican candidates for governor spent more than $3.7 million on advertising ahead…

Podcast: Understanding the threat from Russian election interference with David Shimer

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
America is still trying to come to grips with the story of Russian interference in the…

Utah ranked #1 in new economic competitiveness outlook

by News release
The American Legislative Exchange Council released the thirteenth edition of Rich States,…

Lawmakers considering bonding to boost economy

by Bryan Schott, Managing Editor
With apologies to William Shakespeare, to bond or not to bond, that is the question Utah…

Policy News

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Casual Friday: Weekend Events & Outdoors Report 8-14-20

by TraciO
Outdoors Report -- The Salt Lake Tribune: The best places in northern Utah to beat the…

Accelerate your growth: Making global local with the U.S. Trade and Development Agency

by World Trade Center Utah
Learn about working with the U.S. Trade and Development Agency (USTDA), current trade…
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State of Utah to host virtual employment workshops for veterans, military service members and spouses

by News release
In partnership with the Utah Veterans and Military Employment Coalition, the Utah…
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NHMU to reopen Saturday, August 15 with an evolved museum experience

by Press release
The Natural History Museum of Utah (NHMU) will reopen its doors on Saturday, August 15…
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Utah recognized as a leading state in new national report on data and evidence in policymaking

by News release
At a virtual event co-hosted by the National Governors Association, Results for America…
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Former Salt Lake City Mayor Jackie Biskupski and Chris Redgrave launch Global Leaders Scholarship Fund with Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy

by News Release
As a legacy program of the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference, local nonprofit…

Lighter Side

Not Really Funny
“Yep, Trump went on and on this morning for 53 minutes. Most Americans were like, ‘Hey, if we wanted to hear the president ramble about nothing for an hour, we’d watch the coronavirus briefing.” — JIMMY FALLON

Wise Words

Liberal Trouble

"The trouble with our Liberal friends is not that they're ignorant; it's just that they know so much that isn't so." Ronald Reagan

National Briefing

The battle over vote-by-mail

President Donald Trump said Thursday he opposed much-needed funding for the postal service because it would be used for mail-in voting in November [CNN].

The post office is deactivating mail sorting machines that would handle mail-in ballots ahead of the election without any explanation [Vice].

Democrats in Congress are demanding that the new head of the Postal Service roll back a number of changes he's instituted before election day [NBC News].

The USPS says mail ballots may not be delivered on time to voters in Pennsylvania because deadlines there are too tight [Philadelphia Inquirer].

The Supreme Court denied a request from Republicans to reinstate a requirement in Rhode Island that mail-in ballots must be signed in the presence of two witnesses or a notary [ScotusBlog].

President Trump and his wife Melania have requested mail-in ballots for the upcoming Florida primary despite his rhetoric that mail-in voting would lead to election fraud [USA Today].


Here we go again

President Trump promoted a racist conspiracy theory that Sen. Kamala Harris might not be a U.S. citizen and therefore ineligible to be vice president. Trump previously suggested the same thing about former President Barack Obama [WaPo].


Stimulus delay

Any action on another coronavirus relief bill will likely wait until September at the earliest [CNN].


Economy

The number of new unemployment claims last week slipped below 1 million for the first time since March [USA Today].


Coronavirus

Presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden and his running mate Sen. Kamala Harris call for a nationwide mask mandate to "save lives" and stop the spread of the coronavirus [Twiiter].

The true death toll from the coronavirus in the U.S. is likely already more than 200,00 according to a new analysis [NYT].

A new poll shows a third of Americans say they won't get vaccinated against Covid-19 when a vaccine becomes available [NPR].


Yikes!

The Secret Service, worried that protests following the killing of George Floyd could overrun the White House, sought tactical aircraft and surveillance drones as a countermeasure to the demonstrations [WaPo].


Who cares about ethics?

President Trump said Thursday he's planning to deliver his speech accepting the Republican Party's nomination from the White House lawn. Critics say the location is inappropriate and an ethical violation [New York Post].


Another Trump tell-all

Michael Cohen, President Trump's former personal lawyer, released the foreword from his forthcoming memoir on Thursday. He claimed he has "proof" Trump cheated with the Russians to win the 2016 election among other things [NYT].


Bold prediction...

President Trump says taxes and a spike in crime could help him carry New York in the 2020 election. Trump lost New York by more than 20 points in 2016. Democrats would love to see Trump's campaign spend money there [New York Post].


Saying the quiet part out loud

Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson said this week his probe of Obama-era intelligence agencies would help President Trump win re-election in November [Politico].


QAnon caucus

Marjorie Taylor Greene, a Republican nominee for Congress from Georgia, is not only a believer in the baseless QAnon conspiracy theory, she's also a 9/11 truther, claiming there's "no evidence" a plane crashed into the Pentagon [Business Insider].


Historic agreement

Israel and the United Arab Emirates struck a historic deal to normalize relations between the two countries [BBC].