Friday, March 31, 2006

Build It Downtown

Now that the playing field is level again and Downtown and Sandy represent equal opportunities, there is no reason to pretend that Sandy is the only place it can be built. This is total fiction. Please contact the Salt Lake County Council and let them know that if Downtown businesses will be forced to pay for the stadium, they deserve to have it built in a place that will complement their own institutions. Mayor Peter Corroon: 801 468-2500 Council Randy Horiuchi: 801 468-2936 Jenny Wilson: 801 468-3069 Jim Bradley:801 468-2939 Joe Hatch: 801 468-2933 Michael Jensen: 801 468-2932 David Wilde: 801 468-2931 Mark Crockett: 801 468-2937 Cortlund Ashton: 801 468-2935 Marvin Hendrickson: 801 468-2938 Protect Downtown business. Call the County Council.

A Downtown Stadium

A few Salt Lake City residents in the newspaper and on this site have said they don't want the stadium, that Sandy can have it. I understand that sentiment. However, the SLCo Council is strongly leaning to approving money for the RSL stadium. That money will come almost entirely from Downtown businesses. Whether you like the stadium or not, if you are a Salt Lake City resident, please let the Salt Lake County know that the stadium MUST be built downtown. Why should our neighborhood businesses foot the bill for a projec that is little more than a political payoff for out of city politicians.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

Cool Hand Hatch

I picked this up from Senator Orrin Hatch called outgoing White House Chief of Staff Andrew Card a "cool hand Luke". I don't know where he's going with this. It's clearly a reference to the Paul Newman movie. In the film, Luke is a prison inmate who picks up the name "Cool Hand Luke" in a poker game (he's a great bluffer). Luke is a Christ figure for the other prisoners in the film who are inspired by his obsessive determination to escape and his refusal to conform. So I don't know where Andy Card fits into this. But then again, my thing is really strictly local politics.

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

A Level Pitch

Last year, the Utah Legislature blocked Salt Lake City from building RSL's soccer stadium. This year, the Legislature re- leveled the pitch. The funding situation RSL cited as its sole reason for fleeing to Sandy no longer exists. Sandy and Salt Lake City now represent equal opportunities. Real Salt Lake is now free to pursue its dream of a Downtown stadium. The idea of re- pursuing a Downtown stadium has apparently been floated recently between SLC and RSL.


Contrary to the story presented last week, State Republican Party Chairman Joe Cannon did not count the ballots of the 2158 precinct caucus.

Which Do You Want More?

It's common for politicians to look at a few different races before settling on one and declaring their candidacy. Brian Jenkins is running for U.S. Senate as a Republican. His website is (but it's not up yet)

Monday, March 27, 2006

New Media And Politics

The Senate Site left this insightful comment: "The Senate sees the advent of political blogging the same way we view storm clouds over the San Rafael. Rain on the watershed means flood in the canyons. Like the cleansing but extremely dangerous flash floods that rip through the slot canyons all over our state – new media is changing the way people understand and participate in self government. The issue is not whether the flood is coming – it is. And it is not whether or not we find the flood to be compatible with established norms and habits - it is not. The issue is how to enjoy the changing dynamic in a way that embraces the adventure of a new paradigm, while keeping safe the things we treasure from our past. "

Larry Topham

Lawrence Topham is off the Republican ballot for U.S. Senate.

Well, My Goodness

The Senate Site

Of everything that has taken place at the State Legislature over the past year, the success of The Senate Site has been one of the most significant. Thank you to the Utah Senators who have used The Senate Site to communicate their thoughts and ideas openly and directly. It's important to note that the Senators who participate on The Senate Site open themselves up to direct and public critique of their ideas and sometimes very personal attacks. They deserve our thanks and respect. The online work of our Senators has been recognized by The National Conference of State Legislators. The Senate Site, represented by Ric Cantrell, will participate in the NCSL Spring Forum 2006 in Washington D.C.. This is no small honor. Other Forum participants include Senator Clinton and HHS Secretary Mike "The Hair" Leavitt.


Shaun made an interesting comment on my Councilman Horiuchi "wink and nod" post. So I thought I'd clarify why I think Councilman Horiuchi should find other work. The Legislature never came out on the record and said SLCo MUST use the new tax money for the soccer stadium. But Councilman Horiuchi made it quite clear that a very real deal was struck with the legislature thanks to "winks and nods" and by extension, backroom off- the- record, out- of- the- public- eye wheeling and dealing. This is exactly the kind of anti- representation that SLCo must be very, very wary of.

Friday, March 24, 2006

What A Baby

Here's what Jim Shea had to say in today's Deseret News: "I tried to play by the rules. It's a shame that the (Utah) Democrats are scared chickens," Isn't it weird how some people just crumble when presented with the possibility of political power only to have it taken away. "And I would have gotten away with it too, if it hadn't been for those pesky kids!" Jim, no matter how much you rant at Democrats, it's your own fault you don't meet residence requirements.

Wanted: One New Councilman At- Large

"I don't think we recorded the winks and nods in those meetings," is how Councilman Randy Horiuchi is defending his position that Salt Lake County should bend to the will of the Utah Legislature and Sandy City. (quoted from Tribune) Winks and nods. That's no way to run a government. In fact, it's an extremely poor way to run a government. Scratch that. Councilman Horiuchi's wink and nod method is wrong. It's time for Councilman Horiuchi to move out of government. In other (maybe related?) news, former SLCo Mayor Nancy Workman has been named President of Sandy City Chamber of Commerce. One step forward, two steps back. Maybe she has a place on her staff for soon to be former County Councilman Horiuchi.

Pete Ashdown

Mike Jones of Utahania is a Utah County Republican supporting Pete Ashdown for Senate. He fully disclosed his support for Pete Ashdown, and was elected to be the Precinct Chair.

Jim Shea Should Think About His Gold Medal

Jim Shea and some commenters at SLCSpin have characterized the challenge to Shea's challenge as typical underhanded Democratic tactics. But let's be fair about this. The Utah Democratic Party has made clear to the press that part of the motivation behind challenging Jim Shea is they didn't have the appetite to waive the rules for him while statewide, Democratic candidates have been facing Republican challenges and roadblocks. Candidates have been challenged who have mere weeks remaining to become residents (as opposed to Jim Shea who has A LOT of time left). Also barred from participating are a number of U.S. soldier candidates who will be home from the Middle East before the election, but were not home before the filing deadline. So, Jim Shea (an Olympian no less) not meeting requirements then blaming his problems on Democrats lends a bit of strength to one persons characterization of him as, well, a brat.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Montana's Governor

I saw Montana's Democrat Governor Brian Schweitzer give a speech. I was invited to the event (pulled pork) to write about what I saw. I truly was stunned by Governor Schweitzer. We don't have western politicians in Utah. Sure we have a few ranchers at the statehouse, but our big guys could really be from anywhere. It's significant our politician who has spent the least amount of time in Utah (Senator Hatch) tries to invoke a "western theme" more than anyone else. I would love to see Senator Orrin Hatch put on his "western outfit", strap on his "western accent" and stand next to Governor Schweitzer. I honestly, truly, truly believe that would be the end of the Senator's career. In a way, the Governor was wasted on a room full of Democrats. Governor Schweitzer's message is extremely powerful and compelling to western Americans. The Governor's vision of the mountain west rising to become America's primary defenders should ring true to Utahns who enthusiastically embrace the independence, freedom, optimism, and opportunity of the west. (then confusingly elect an east coast carpetbagger who actively tries to hobble the freedom and independence technology gives us) I wish Utah's voters could have Governor Schweitzer's image in their heads as they hit the polls this year.

Carolina Pulled Pork. A Review.

The Utah Democratic Party hosted Montana Governor Brian Schweitzer at a lunch. The menu included your choice of Carolina Pulled Pork or Roasted Chicken. I chose the pork. This is my story. The pork was served on a roll with cole slaw, so I intuitively reached with my hands to consume sandwich- style. I observed all at my table and surrounding tables were eating their pulled pork with knife and fork. I checked to see if any of the dignitaries were using their hands. That would have given me the necessary cover. I was forced to use the fork and knife. Late- comer Rep. Ralph Becker used his hands, and I regretted I had finished before he arrived. The pork had good flavor, but was a bit dry. The slaw had a good bite and I liked the potatoes, but would have like them better with a bit more cheese. (more cheese is my culinary cure- all) Dessert was peach/blueberry cobbler. Mighty tasty. Rob Miller had the roasted chicken. For his review of the roasted chicken, go to The Utah Amicus.

"Stunningly Sycophantic"

That's how the Tribune's Editorial Board described County Councilman Randy Horiuchi's participation in Tuesday's Sandy stadium debate. It truly was stunning, but not completely surprising. After all, the Tribune correctly characterized the project as "a $45 million favor for their (lawmakers') friends at Sandy City Hall" and one of Sandy Mayor Tom Dolan's allies is Councilman Horiuchi. So, sycophantic? Yes. And disappointing, and irresponsible. But surprising? No.

Guess What We Forgot

Yesterday was Senator Orrin Hatch's birthday. March 22, 1934. Happy belated birthday.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Jim Shea Roundup

I called Jim Shea on the number listed on the Lieutenant Governor's website and asked him how he felt about being knocked out of the race on a technicality. He said, "It stinks I'm being punished for voting less than 3 years ago somewhere else." It appears he may be missing the point. He's not being punished for voting, he's been eliminated because he doesn't meet the residence requirement. They're two very different things Jim Shea Ends Candidacy For Utah House- Law to Keep Shea Out of Office, for Now- Olympian's candidacy questioned- Deseret News

Mike Lee

I hit up yesterday's Democratic Party's press conference. After availing myself of the free donuts and juice, I met Mike Lee. He's a House candidate in District 32 (West Valley). I had a very interesting discussion with him. What struck me was the contrast between his youth and his maturity. He is young. He's 29 years old. And yet he's not so young. Despite his youthful appearance, he is very different from his peers (a large number of whom are still undergraduate students). This is probably due to his spending the better part of his twenties as a Salt Lake County Sherriff's Deputy. The past two years he has spent as Detective. Anyway, it looks like Rep. Ron Bigelow(incumbent) is in a bit of trouble.

Everyone Is Welcome At Republican Caucuses. Unless They Oppose Senator Orrin Hatch

In his most recent campaign journal, Senator Orrin Hatch had this to say about the neighborhood caucus meetings: "The precinct caucuses are democracy in their purest form, where you ,the voter, have an opportunity to make your voice heard regarding the direction of your political party and the candidates you select to carry the party banner in the upcoming election... I hope you will attend and get involved in our political process at the ground level. " Those are nice sentiments, but they only apply to Senator Hatch's supporters. Mike Ridgway, Republican challenger to Senator Hatch, had some problems accessing the details of his caucus meeting. When he attended the caucus, he found the caucus presided over by County Chairman James Evans while all ballots cast were counted by State Party Chairman Joe Cannon. Also present was a uniformed Deputy of the Salt Lake County Sherriff who removed Ridgway from the Caucus meeting as he attempted to call for a vote to remove Evans as caucus chair. The Republicans present proceeded to elect Ridgway in absentia as a County Republican Delegate.

Monday, March 20, 2006

KCPW Clears It Up

As usual, KCPW puts the pieces together. Former Olympian May Be Ineligible To Run For Office-

Iron County Voter Registration Tampering

The St. George Spectrum ran an article Friday outlining alleged tampering with Democrat voter registration in Iron County. The investigation stems from a rash of newly registered Democrats (including a surprising number of Republicans trying to switch to the Democrat side) being listed not as Democrat, but as "not- affiliated". Iron County Clerk Dave Yardley insisted the problem is due to voters who incorrectly fill out the paperwork. The Spectrum left it at that. But a pending investigation may trace the problem directly to the County Clerk's office, where an employee was heard to say "I don't have the stomach to type DEM, so I'll just type UAF".

Jim Shea Update

Jim Shea, Jr.'s Olympic bio still lists his residence as Lake Placid. Also, Shea apparently registered to vote in Utah the same day he filed his candidacy.

Pete Ashdown

This is a photo of Pete Ashdown meeting Senator Orrin Hatch as they filed their papers at the Lieutenant Governor's office. Senator Hatch didn't even have the respect to wear a tie as he filed his official papers for United States Senate. He treats the office like he treats the voters. With just enough attention to keep his only career. After thirty years in the Senate we get: "I love the Constitution" What a joke.


Former Olympian James E. Shea, Jr. has filed as a Republican in the District 53 Legislative race. To be eligible as a candidate, a person must be a resident of Utah for 3 consecutive years. James Shea was allegedy a resident of Lake Placid as recently as 2004.

Senator Hatch (hearts) Re- Writing The Constitution

Senator Orrin Hatch loves to make meaningless statements like "I love the Constitution" and he loves get people who don't know him or anything about politics to declare "Senator Hatch loves the Constitution". But the Tribune's D.C. Notebook made the excellent point that if Senator Hatch loves the Constitution sooo much, why has he tried to change it 70 times.

Senator Orrin Hatch: Pure Democracy Means No One Cares What You Do

According to Senator Orrin Hatch's journal, tomorrow's party precint caucuses are "democracy in its purest form". At a Salt Lake County Republican caucus training meeting over the weekend, some participants were irked to be handed County Republican flier that featured an endorsement of Senator Orrin Hatch. Senator Hatch faces two Republican challengers. Of course, why should Senator Hatch stick to the rules? After 30 years, voters haven't held his feet to the fire even once.

Friday, March 17, 2006

List Of Candidates

Thanks to The Senate Site for pointing to the Lieutenant Governor's list of 2006 candidates. It is the list (continually updated) of individuals who have filed for state and federal offices.

Dave Checketts

Real Salt Lake owner Dave Checketts will be the guest of Midday Metro on KCPW Monday, March 20 at 10am. Call in or email KCPW to ask him a question. I have a few questions about the stadium. I wonder how I'll phrase them.

Mike Ridgeway

Senator Orrin Hatch has a last minute Republican challenger. Mike Ridgeway is heavily involved in the Salt Lake County Republican Party. He is also very controversial. Some call him obsessive, others call him crazy. This should be a good time.

Thursday, March 16, 2006

Senator Orrin Hatch: Most Boring Campaign Ever

Senator Orrin Hatch has a piece of audio at his campaign website. It's one of those things that loads automatically and scares the crap out of you if you're not paying attention. Anyway, this audio shows Senator Hatch believes campaigns are little more than annoying formalities. Not only does the script offer absolutely no information other than "just trust Senator Hatch", His campaign chose talent that can barely speak english. It's a mind- numbing, stomach churning fiesta of swallowed consonants and dropped vowels. Perhaps the Senator surrounds himself with horrible stereotypical Utah accents to disguise the fact that his East Coast carpet- bagger tongue could never master anything better than a forced, indistinct "general use western".

Utah County Strategy

Utahania has a strategy for advancing the Pete Ashdown cause in his neighborhood.

St. George Spectrum Praises Pete Ashdown

Here are a few highlights from the Spectrum overview of Pete Ashdown's Cedar City speech. "After listening to Ashdown speak to the Cedar City Rotary Club for about 30 minutes on Tuesday, I'd encourage you to get to know him." "a refreshing change of pace from the usual political posturing." "There's little doubt that Ashdown listens to the people."

More Utah Political Acronyms

There have been some great Utah political acronym suggestions: NAMB: not a message bill UV: Utah Values DN2A: Demo's Need Not Apply And of course, there are the SLCSpin specific acronym suggestions: GOEB: Get off Ethan's back PHCBA: Put the Hatch Clock Back Already WIRSN: What is Rocky smoking now? EPGPO: European Pansy Game Playing Overlords

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Catching Up With Pete Ashdown

I'm a few days behind in political news, but I'm catching up. Worth reading: Some online interviews with the Internet's choice for U.S. Senate, Pete Ashdown. Pete Ashdown, Episode One- YDEMS Pete Ashdown: The Internet-generation politician- Amerikansk politik MyDD Conversation with UT-Sen Candidate Pete Ashdown-

Legal Polygamy

If polygamy is legalized, I think gangster rappers will be first in line.

Senator Orrin Hatch Doomsday Clock

The Senator Hatch clock will be up and running again. I'm having some technical difficulties.

Utah Democrats Are In A Good Mood Today

Friday, March 10, 2006

Utah Political Acronyms

Utah politics needs a system of acronyms to help save time (like used across the Internet). The acronyms can replace frequently used political phrases such as FBR: Fired by Rocky TARFC: Thinking about running for Congress IBTP: I blame the press OMAV: Our morals and values AOAO: As old as Orrin

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Draper Has An Image Problem

Here are a few of the comments left at the story on the Draper D.I. debate. Charles: Let's build a wall around Draper. I don't want any of those undesirable snobs getting out of Draper and into MY community! Jason: Yes a five story water-tight wall. It will keep everything bad out, then after it is finished. Lets divert the Jordan River and fill it. Rollin: There's a DI in West Jordan?! But I live in West Jordan! Anyone looking for a house in West Jordan please contact me immediately. Jason: The North Shall Rise Agian..... Down to dixie. Long live the Union... Travis: Convicts and Snobs, perfect combination.

DesNews Throws Down

The Deseret News came down hard on Draper City today. From their editorial on Draper refusing to allow a D.I. "most Utahns are not ready to adopt the caste system of India and label one segment of the population "untouchable." "read the poem "Richard Cory" by the American poet Edwin Arlington Robinson. There, a moneyed soul seems to have everything a person could ever want — prestige, property, power. But the guy goes home one night and puts a bullet through his head. Why? Because he was hollow. He'd mortgaged his soul. He'd forgotten what mattered most." Ouch.

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

The Senator Orrin Hatch Doomsday Clock

You may notice the Senator Hatch clock has disappeared from the right sidebar. This change is not permanent. The clock will return. In the meantime, you can keep up with the crazy antics of the Senator Hatch clock at the website of Green Party U.S. Senate candidate Julian Hatch.

Utah Democrats

Utah Democratic Party staffers Jeff Bell and Craig Axford have opened up shop at Utah Democrats. They have an interesting round up of this year's legislature. "Apparently, school’s not just for children anymore"- From Jeff Bell's post on education.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Councilman Joe Hatch

Thank you Councilman Joe Hatch, for having a sense of humor. (from The Utah Amicus)


A family that includes multiple wives, each speaking a different language.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

"Can Anyone Tell Me How To Get Back Home From Here?"

According to the Tribune, Mayor Rocky Anderson was in Washington D.C. raging against :" phony, ineffectual homeland security grandstanding." Meanwhile Salt Lake City hoteliers have been raped by Utah's Legislature and Salt Lake County Government in a political payoff to Sandy And the silence from the Mayor's office has been absolutely deafening.

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

Today's Jackass

After hearing criticism of Tetris lobbying firm for playing all the sides in the stadium project, Salt Lake County Councilman Joe Hatch said in a Deseret News article: "Attack the principles of the public funding for the stadium — don't attack the process unless it's not fair." Councilman Hatch is confusing "technically legal" with "fair". They're not the same. Sandy stabbed SLC in the back with its own money. The Utah Legislature blocked SLC's RDA use last year while clearing the way for Sandy's RDA use this year. Legislature will bully SLCo into sinking all of its tourism money into a political favor for Sandy. Stadium project in Sandy will be paid for by hotel dollars from SLC. The main lobbying firm involved works for SLCo, RSL, and Sandy. Councilman Hatch, NOTHING about this project is fair. Forget "technically legal", this doesn't even pass a basic smell test. The real disappointment has been the unwillingness of County government to stand up for itself and the non- Sandy cities within its borders. In the RSL stadium debate, the Salt Lake County Mayor and Council have been a bunch of pushovers.