Senate pledges to rewrite Republican health care bill. Utah’s House members vote to repeal Obamacare. Chaffetz eyes Obama’s pension.
Happy Friday. Republicans celebrated a decided victory in narrowly passing through the House a plan to overhaul Obamacare. But as the bill moves through the Senate, don’t expect it to remain intact. Many GOP senators have pledged to essentially rewrite the legislation, adding more provisions for pre-existing conditions and increasing tax credits. "We’re writing a Senate bill and not passing the House bill," said Republican Sen. Lamar Alexander. "We’ll take whatever good ideas we find there that meet our goals." [Politico]
Topping the news: All four of Utah’s Republican House members voted to repeal the Affordable Care Act and replace it with the GOP American Health Care Act, which could drop millions off their insurance and force some with pre-existing conditions to pay higher premiums if it is signed into law. [Trib] [DNews] [ABC4]
-> Despite an executive order from President Donald Trump that would allow tax-exempt religious organizations to be more involved in politics, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Catholic Diocese of Salt Lake City say they’ll continue to stay neutral. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13] [KUTV]
-> Rep. Jason Chaffetz is expected to reintroduce legislation targeting presidential pensions following former President Barack Obama’s $400,000 speech deal with a Wall Street firm. [DNews]
Tweets of the day: From @pjdoland: "Your father cutting off your hand with a lightsaber is a pre-existing condition."
-> From @MargoLezowitz: "From what I can surmise, it’s more of a healthdontcare bill."
-> From @onesarahjones: "I’d say I’m depressed about the healthcare bill but if it becomes law I literally can’t afford to be depressed, so"
Happy Birthday: To former state Rep. Brad Dee and Taylorsville Community Development Director Mark McGrath. On Saturday to state Sen. J. Stuart Adams and Sunday to Gov. Gary Herbert.
Behind the Headlines: Salt Lake Tribune reporters Lee Davidson and Benjamin Wood, Washington Bureau Chief Thomas Burr and columnist Robert Gehrke join KCPW’s Roger McDonough to talk about the week’s top stories, including University of Utah President David Pershing’s retirement announcement and Rep. Jason Chaffetz’s return to Washington in a scooter. Listen at KCPW.org or tune in to KCPW or Utah Public Radio for the broadcast from 9-10 a.m.
In other news: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has granted a 31-year-old mother, who had reportedly overstayed her visa for more than 20 years, a temporary stay to remain in the country after she was detained last week. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13] [KUTV]
-> Nine minority organizations in Utah — with representatives from the black, Latino, Tongan, refugee, Native American, Japanese and Chinese communities — have joined together with a pledge to revamp the political system for voters of color. [Trib]
-> At the sixth annual Energy Development Summit hosted by Gov. Gary Herbert’s office, a variety of speakers stressed the ongoing need for innovative energy solutions in Utah to keep the state competitive. [DNews]
-> Rep. Mike Winder is considering a plan to turn the Jordan River Parkway into a state park, potentially with managed campsites, in an attempt to protect the area now that a homeless resource center will be erected near its shores. [DNews]
-> The names of three Utah law enforcement officers who died in the line of duty — including one who was mauled by a lion in 1927 — joined 139 other names on the State Capitol’s Law Enforcement Memorial Wall. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13] [KUTV]
-> Pat Bagley gives his take on the House approval of a plan to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act, which he calls "a massive windfall for billionaires." [Trib]
-> Paul Rolly examines a speech by state Rep. Mike Noel regarding Bears Ears National Monument as an example of how he says "a fallacy becomes the new truth" and then guides policy and potential legislation in Utah’s Republican Party. [Trib]
-> Robert Gehrke says the tale of Silvia Avelar-Flores, the Utah woman who had been detained by ICE agents, is yet another reason to maintain resistance to Trump’s "divisive" policies and should provide a wake-up call for Utahns. [Trib]
-> The Senate voted in favor of a $1.1 trillion bipartisan bill that will fund the government through September. The legislation now moves to President Donald Trump’s desk for approval. [TheHill] [TheGuardian] [ABCNews] [WaPost]
-> Trump met with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull to honor the 75th anniversary of the victory of the United States and Australia over Japan in the Battle of the Coral Sea during World War II. Their first encounter since a contentious phone call back in February seemed to go smoothly — "I love Australia; I always have," Trump told reporters after the meeting. [Politico] [NYTimes] [BBCNews] [WaTimes]
Where are they?
- Gov. Gary Herbert meets separately with the executive director of the Commission on Crime and Juvenile Justice, the executive director of the Department of Administrative Services and with general counsel.
- State Auditor John Dougall attends two convocations at the University of Utah for his son, heads to a lunch meeting and works in the office between the ceremonies.
-- Courtney Tanner and Taylor Stevens