elections

A leader of the Count My Vote initiative says he’s concerned the legislature is positioning itself to destroy the intent of a compromise bill, known as SB 54, passed during the last legislative session.

Andrea Smardon / KUER

Utah’s 2nd District Congressman Chris Stewart will get another term. He beat his Democratic opponent Luz Robles easily. In his victory speech, Stewart declared it a good night for the United States of America.

“Tonight, we get to start the fight,” he said. “We get to start the fight to reclaim our country once again.”

Brian Grimmett

Early voting locations around the state opened their doors Tuesday allowing Utah voters to get a head start on the mid-term elections.

In the morning, a slow trickle of people shuffle in to cast their ballot at the Salt Lake County building. Only about 10 people had shown up in the first few hours of being open. Earl and Colleen Hardwick were two of them.

“It’s just really convenient and nice to get up in the morning to go vote and have breakfast,” Earl says.

The Utah State Democratic Hispanic Caucus is launching a statewide, Spanish language media campaign in the run up to this year’s mid-term elections.

The 15-second ad will run on Univision and Telemundo TV stations as well as several local Spanish language radio stations until election day. It features young, college aged Hispanics and Latinos and local Hispanic and Latina elected officials, like State Sen. Luz Robles.

Nate Salazar is the Salt Lake County chairman of the Utah State Hispanic Democratic Caucus.

It’s pop quiz time. Do you know what congressional district you’re in? If the answer is no, you’re not alone. Utah’s largest and possibly most misunderstood district is the second.

I’m at a playground in Sugar House Park in Salt Lake City, looking for potential voters. I chose this park because it’s in the Second Congressional District, but it’s right on the edge. Just on the other side of Interstate 80 is Utah's Fourth District. There seems to be some confusion about this.

“Do you know what district you’re in in terms of Congress?” I asked one man.

Photo pool, The Salt Lake Tribune

The major party candidates vying to represent Utah’s second congressional district met in a debate Thursday. Republican Congressman Chris Stewart and Democratic challenger Luz Robles faced off in front of a live audience at Southern Utah University in Cedar City.

The Utah Debate Commission has finalized the list of who will be participating in this year’s mid-term election debates and the list only includes Republicans and Democrats.

The League of Women Voters of Utah is releasing its voter’s guide on Monday in anticipation of the mid-term elections in November.   The number of candidates who participated is down this year.

During every election cycle, The League of Women Voters engages candidates running for office with questions on specific issues.  Jenn Gonnelly is Co-President of the Utah chapter of the League.

Brian Grimmett

Utah Republican Party Chairman James Evans is encouraging several legislative candidates to not participate in debates organized by groups that include Alliance for a Better Utah.

Brian Grimmett

A growing group of Utah lawmakers want to take control of land inside the states borders that is managed by the federal government. Democratic Attorney General candidate Charles Stormont is arguing that the federal courts should not be the place to stage that fight.

Brian Grimmett

Democratic Utah Attorney General candidate Charles Stormont officially launched his campaign today with a call for real reform in the office.

Charles Stormont says as a recent employee in the Attorney General’s office he can say with confidence that Sean Reyes hasn’t done enough to fix the problems in the office left over from former AG John Swallow.

Brian Grimmett

It’s been three months since Governor Gary Herbert appointed Sean Reyes to fill the vacancy left by John Swallow in the Attorney General’s office, and today Reyes officially filed to run to keep the spot for the remainder of Swallow’s term.

Reyes says he wants to keep his position so he can continue implementing changes aimed at improving the public’s eroding trust in the Attorney General’s office in the aftermath of the John Swallow scandals. He says he’s already seeing results and he’d like to continue what he’s started.

Brian Grimmett

Democrat Charles Stormont has filed to run in the special election to replace former Attorney General John Swallow.

Charles Stormont has worked as an attorney in the Utah Attorney General’s office for the past 6 years.  He says the Swallow scandal and the effects it had on the office is one of the main reasons he decided to run.

Andrea Smardon

UPDATE: Additional candidates who have filed for the 4th Congressional District include Bill Peterson (DEM), Bob Fuehr (REP), and Jim Vein (LIB).

The race for Utah Congressman Jim Matheson’s seat is on. Republican Mia Love and Democrat Doug Owens both filed Monday to represent the 4th District. Love narrowly lost to Matheson in the last election, and claims to be a better candidate than she was in 2012. But Owens insists he could still pull off a win.

Utah Elections Office

    

The Utah House has passed a bill that would allow voters to keep their personal information private. That information is currently available from voter registration records that have been posted online.

Eric Hutchings, R-Kearns, supports a bill that would allow voters to choose whether they want their personal details from state election records to be public. Last year, a web site bought personal information for 1.5 million Utah voters and posted it on the web. Hutchings says that kind of data is fodder for thieves like the ones who stole his identity.

Photo by Terence Burlij/PBS NewsHour.

Organizers of The Count My Vote Initiative can now add Mitt Romney to their group of supporters. If passed, the proposal would move Utah to a direct primary election system.  But a bill moving through the legislature could keep the current caucus system intact.

Brian Grimmett

A bill that would exempt political parties from any outcome of the Count My Vote initiative passed another hurdle Thursday as the Utah Senate gave SB54 preliminary approval.

SB 54’s sponsor, Sen. Curt Bramble, R-Provo, says the bill is the ultimate compromise between the political parties that want to keep the current caucus/convention system and the members of the Count My Vote initiative that want to move toward direct primaries.

U.S. House of Representatives

Utah’s only Democratic state representative, Jim Matheson, has announced that he will not seek reelection in 2014. 

Karina Puikkonen

Utah congressional candidate Mia Love held a town hall meeting in Sandy today. Former Congressman and retired Lieutenant Colonel Allan West was also present to endorse the Saratoga Springs Mayor’s campaign.

During the meeting, Colonel West says he traveled to Utah because he believes republican candidates like Mayor Love would restore principles of equal opportunity rather than equal results to the modern American Dream.

Brian Grimmett

Leaders of the Count My Vote initiative say they will continue to move forward with their efforts to replace the party caucuses with direct primaries even after state GOP delegates voted over the weekend to reform the current system.

erinforcouncil.com & Bill Davis 4 District 5

On November 5th Salt Lake City residents in districts 1, 5, and 7 will choose new people to represent them on the city council. In District 5, Jill Remington Love, the only woman on the council is vacating her seat, and two very different candidates are vying to fill it: small business man Bill Davis and clean air advocate Erin Mendenhall.

The Coffee Garden in the 9th and 9th neighborhood is in the heart of District 5. Darryl High says places like this that make his neighborhood truly great. He’s a member of the East Liberty Park community council.

Utah Senate Democrats

Democratic State Senator Luz Robles says she’s planning to run against Republican incumbent Chris Stewart for Utah’s 2nd Congressional district seat in 2014.

Brian Grimmett

The Utah Lt. Governor’s office has picked the law firm Snell & Wilmer to be the special counsel in the investigation into whether or not Attorney General John Swallow violated state election laws.

Brian Grimmett

Murray City Councilman Jim Brass announced today that he’s running to replace Murray City Mayor Dan Snarr, who recently disclosed he will not be running for re-election. 

Jim Brass has been on the Murray City Council for ten years. Before that, he served on the planning and zoning commission. Democratic state Representative Carol Spackman-Moss was at Brass’ announcement. She says she’s giving her support to Brass because of his experience.

WVC Mayor Mike Winder Won't Seek Re-Election

May 22, 2013
West Valley City

West Valley City Mayor Mike Winder announced today that he will not run for re-election later this year. Despite problems plaguing the city’s police force and a scandal where Winder admitted writing articles under a pen-name praising his city, he says he’s proud of his tenure as Mayor.

Winder says the $35K annual salary he receives as Mayor is not enough to provide for his family and he’ll be looking for a better paying job when his term ends next January. He says West Valley City’s economy blossomed on his watch.

Andrea Smardon

Utah Republicans decided at their convention on Saturday to keep their system in place for choosing party nominees. A proposal to raise the percentage of votes needed to avoid a primary sparked heated debate about how best to give lesser-known candidates a fair shot. 

The Salt Lake Tribune (pool photo)

Utah Lt. Governor Greg Bell will seek special counsel to investigate three of the 12 allegations brought against Attorney General John Swallow that he violated election law.

A bill that would allow citizens to register to vote in Utah on election-day was approved by a House Committee today.  HB 91 would allow voters to register at the polls on and require county clerks to count those votes.  Democrat Rebecca Chavez Houck of Salt Lake County is the sponsor of the bill.  She hopes the legislation would increase voter turnout.

Utah students and families battle the rising cost of higher education, a bill to fund preschool programs for at-risk children fails in the Utah Senate, and Representative Jim Matheson introduces legislation to end straight ticket voting.

Governor Gary Herbert is sworn into office for his first full term, new Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams holds an inauguration ceremony of his own, and environmental groups show concern over the acquisition of EnergySolutions.

Pages