Daily Fix, June 15

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*Do you have an extra $1000 lying around? If your answer is yes, then Mitt Romney wants to meet you! Or at least be in the same room with you. (SL Trib) Romney is holding a fundraiser at the Grand America hotel on June 24, and you’re invited. But don’t stay too long – because Jon Huntsman will also be in town eager to meet you. Details about Huntsman’s “public event” and “fundraiser” are not yet available, though. I’m guessing one of them will be held at the Grand America hotel.

*Utah is ending its fiscal year with a surplus. (SL Trib) Now that’s good governing. Or maybe just a sign that taxes are too high. Either way, it’s preferable to ending the fiscal year at current tax rates in a deficit, and our state representatives are to be commended. I mean, Democrats in Washington haven’t even proposed a budget in over 2 years. Former DNC Chair Tim Kaine says that’s a “major problem” that is giving him “heartburn” in his Senate run in Virginia. (Americano) But it should give him more than heartburn. Democrats in Washington, Obama included, are like the appx. 100,000 government employees who haven’t even filed tax returns for several years — you see they’re just too busy “doing the people’s business” to pass a budget that would bind them or acknowledge limits. Paying taxes, passing budgets, move on, man. Over time, it begins to look a lot like the Bill Clinton/Anthony Weiner defense. And it’s too easy to keep spending other people’s money in the meantime.

*Salt Lake County, on the other hand, may not give an expected pay raise to employees as soon as originally predicted. (SL Trib) Those employees did receive an increase in January, however. That’s more than a lot of other folks. But don’t worry, we told you yesterday that Obama’s changes are “painful.” Were you “hoping” otherwise? Silly rabbits.

*The Wisconsin Supreme Court overturned an unruly lower court judge yesterday and found that she had improperly interfered with the legislature when she issued a permanent injunction against the state’s new collective bargaining measure. (WSJ) The Wisconsin Supreme Court found that the lower court had “exceeded its jurisdiction, invaded the legislature’s constitutional powers under Article IV, Section 1 and Section 17 of the Wisconsin Constitution, and erred in enjoining the publication and further implementation of the Act.” That’s pretty egregious. Phil Neuenfeldt, president of the Wisconsin State AFL-CIO, called the Supreme Court’s ruling “an affront to our democracy.” (AP) An affront to democracy? A bill is properly passed by the properly-elected legislature and upheld by the state’s supreme court and it is an affront to democracy? I suppose it depends on whether we are talking about democracy or “union democracy.”

*In seemingly unrelated Wisconsin news, their legislature is now the 49th state to pass a concealed-carry law. (WI State Journal) The Assembly still has to pass the law. Hopefully that doesn’t introduce a new dimension of seriousness into union democracy drum circles.

*The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is taking its I’m a Mormon campaign to New York City, with advertisements on an electronic billboard in Times Square, on top of cabs and inside the subways. (Deseret News) As a mormon who used to live in NYC, such a campaign might help bring familiarity with the church in a context other than Big Love. And it might even work. Trust me, when you’re trying to ignore the creepy guy in sweats that won’t stop staring at you from across the subway, there’s not much else to do than stare at the ads. At least we’ll get to see what famous Mormons would look like with a graffiti mustache and goatee.

*And speaking of good publicity, a Draper teenager was featured on the MTV reality show “16 and Pregnant,” for being, well, 16 and pregnant. (SL Trib) The show has received criticism for glorifying teen pregnancy, but producers claim that they are doing just the opposite, by showcasing how hard it is to be a teen mom. Kudos to Izabella Tovar for having her baby and keeping the father involved (the two are engaged to be married). But yowzers, is this really something we want to showcase on television?

*Final arguments were filed in a Pennsylvania preliminary injunction motion to decide whether a new state law that cuts $1.4 million of public funding from Planned Parenthood is valid. (Fox 19) ACLU lawyers are asking the judge to take as binding a letter from Medicaid Administrator Donald Berwick saying that “federal law states beneficiaries can obtain general health services from any qualified provider.” Which, obviously, begs the question – is federal money being used by Planned Parenthood to fund abortions or not? Do the states really have no other option than to accept the whipsaw of federal logic on this issue?

*On Tuesday the Senate rejected the an amendment sponsored by Tom Coburn, R.-Okla, to end the $6 billion tax subsidy and import tariff program that has created Big Ethanol. (Investors.com) “How is it that the party loudly proclaiming how the government shouldn’t “pick winners and losers” could only manage to get 34 senators to oppose one of the most egregious examples of federal industrial policy?”

*Roll Call notes that Rep. Jim Matheson is on the top of the “House Retirement Watch” list. We’re watching too. Matheson could showcase for the world all that Utah has to offer as a retirement destination.

*And finally, don’t forget tonight’s redistricting meeting at the Salt Lake City Library Auditorium at 6 p.m. Details are here.

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2 Responses to “Daily Fix, June 15”

  1. Jacob Says:

    *Roll Call notes that Rep. Jim Matheson is on the top of the “House Retirement Watch” list. We’re watching too. Matheson could showcase for the world all that Utah has to offer as a retirement destination.

    Here is a +1 for Jim for governor! with the blatant corruption of utah republicans, we need a shake up. The top is a good place to start!

  2. markg91359 Says:

    The people of WI elected a legislature that they thought would restore prosperity to their state. No one had any clue their major agenda was eliminating collective bargaining rights for a huge segment of employees.

    Watch carefully what happens on July 13th (recall election day). I expect some republican legislators to be taken to the trash can.

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