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News roundup: Trump can’t stop talking about Russia, even if it hurts him

First Published      Last Updated May 19 2017 12:36 pm

Trump can’t stop talking about Russia, even if it hurts him. Chaffetz to leave office June 30. Herbert won’t call special session.

Happy Friday. President Donald Trump can’t stop talking about Russia, even if his repeated comments may come back to bite him. In tweets and public remarks, Trump seems unable to drop the topic that has dogged him since his first day in office — even if it prolongs the controversy and potentially puts him at greater legal risk. [WaPost]

Topping the news: Rep. Jason Chaffetz announced Thursday that he will leave office June 30. [Trib] [DNews] [ABC4] [FOX13] [KUTV] [KUER]

-> Gov. Gary Herbert said he has the authority to set procedures for a special election to replace Chaffetz and that he won’t be pushed by lawsuit threats from the legislature to call a special session to write those rules. [Trib] [DNews] [KUTV] Utah Senate President Wayne Niederhauser echoed House Speaker Greg Hughes’ warning that Herbert could face a lawsuit if he doesn’t call a special session to set procedures to replace Rep. Jason Chaffetz. [DNews]

-> Robert Gehrke argues that Chaffetz should give up his Oversight Committee gavel since he’s announced he’s a lame duck. [Trib] Some fellow members of Congress agree. [Politico]

-> A new poll for Utah Policy shows 54 percent of Utah residents disapprove of President Donald Trump’s performance. [UtahPolicy] [DNews] [ABC4] [FOX13]

-> Nearly half of Utahns disapprove of Trump’s firing of FBI Director James Comey. [UtahPolicy]

Tweets of the day: From @DavidMastio: "Donald Trump is the very first witch to tie himself to a stake and set himself on fire."

-> From @maggieNYT: "Under Spicer, the briefings have become a version of WWE. Trump aides see reporters getting clips on cable news reels and question the point"

Behind the Headlines: Tribune Washington Bureau Chief Thomas Burr, government and politics editor Dan Harrie and editorial writer Michelle Quist join KCPW’s Roger McDonough to talk about the week’s top stories, including former FBI Director James Comey’s memo and special election processes.

In other news: The Utah Coalition Against Sexual Assault is pushing back against a bill that could come in the next legislative session that would require colleges to give amnesty to sexual assault victims in cases where drugs and alcohol are involved, and would also give schools the ability to report serious assaults to law enforcement. [APviaTrib]

-> The Southern Utah Wilderness Alliance ran full page ads in the New York Times and Washington Post as part of its campaign to save Bears Ears and Grand-Staircase Escalante national monuments. [DNews]

-> Salt Lake County Sheriff James Winder is being considered for the position of chief of police in Moab, according to Winder’s former undersheriff. [KUTV]

-> A report by Pew Research Center ranks the Ogden-Clearfield metro area No. 9 in the country for percentage of interracial marriages. [Trib]

-> Longtime LDS general authority and former managing director of the church’s welfare services, Glenn Pace, passed away Tuesday. His funeral is scheduled for Saturday.  [Trib]

-> The Utah Department of Transportation will turn on ramp meters at the Bangerter Highway and 14600 South on ramps during morning and evening commutes. [DNews]

-> The Salt Lake County Library donated more than 14,000 pounds of food to the Utah Food Bank after a food drive held in April. [DNews]

-> The former online domain for Tooele High School is now redirected to a page with galleries of young women posing in lingerie after it was purchased and held for "ransom," according to a letter written by Principal Jeffrey Hamm. [Trib] [ABC4]

-> Morgan County School District warned students if they continue sexting, they will face charges. [FOX13]

-> Salt Lake City School District teachers will receive a 9 percent raise next year. [Trib]

-> Paul Rolly argues that accusations against Councilwoman Michele Weeks made by other members of the Draper City Council aren’t based on wrongdoing, but rather her Democratic background. [Trib]

-> Pat Bagley offers his take on Chaffetz’s possibly future endeavors. [Trib]

Nationally: President Donald Trump denied collusion with Russia and called the appointment of a special prosecutor a "witch hunt." [NYTimes] [WaPost] [Politico]

-> Joe Lieberman is a top candidate for next FBI director. [NYTimes] [WaPost] [Politico]

-> The White House revealed some aspects of the proposed budget, which includes less money than originally requested for a wall on the border of Mexico and cuts to federal employee retirement programs. [NYTimes] [WaPost]

Where are they?

  • Rep. Mia Love meets with staff and returns to Utah.
  • Gov. Gary Herbert visits California to discuss economic development.
  • Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox attends an Association of Colleges and Employers event.
  • State Auditor John Dougall goes to the Board of Regents meeting.

Got a tip? A birthday, wedding or anniversary to announce? Email us at cornflakes@sltrib.com. If you haven’t already, sign up for our weekday email and get this sent directly to your inbox. [Trib]

-- Thomas Burr and Emily Anderson

Twitter.com/thomaswburr and Twitter.com/emilyinorgandy