Will anti-Mormon voters flock to Mitt? Lee: end 'monetary morphine.' DNC head blasts Hatch.
Happy Thursday. Now that Mitt Romney is on track to clinch the Republican nomination and become the first major presidential candidate who is Mormon, the question becomes what happens to all those voters out there who align with the GOP but say they won't back a Mormon candidate? Do they stay home? Do they embrace Mitt? Mother Jones' Tim Murphy explores the idea in a piece titled "Anti-Mormons for Mitt?" [MotherJones]
Topping the news: Sen. Orrin Hatch, former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist and Rep. Chris Herrod have their first senatorial debate and Hatch's longtime Senate experience is a key issue. [Trib] [DNews] [Fox13] [Herald] [AP]. A video recap of the U.S. Senate debate: [DNews].
-> Sen. Mike Lee wants to end the "monetary morphine" at the Federal Reserve. [RedState]
Tweet of the day: @daveweigel: "If Yahoo! is firing people, the least they could do is get rid of the exclamation point."
Happy birthday: To Karen Crompton and Jim Urquhart.
Happening tomorrow: An open "meet and greet" for Republican state and county delegates to get to know the candidates running for office in Utah. The event is from 6 to 9 p.m. at the Old Historic Courthouse in Logan (199 N Main).
In other news: Rep. Jim Matheson has gone 6-0 against Republican challengers, leading this year's crop to say that they're not going to let the Utah Democrat label them as extreme or let him frame the debate. [DNews]
-> Pat Bagley offers his take on Wall Street's involvement the recent economic upturn. [Trib]
-> Bob Bernick compares congressional candidate Chris Stewart's bid to the 1992 run by author Richard Eyre. [UtahPolicy]
-> Hatch predicts Republicans will gain enough seats to hold a one-vote margin in the Senate next session, though he adds that he hopes it's a stronger margin. [Politico]
-> A proposed rule change at the Salt Lake County Democratic Convention could affect whether candidates face a primary or not. [UtahPolicy]
-> A Utah entrepeneur is expected to attend a White House bill signing. [DNews]
2012 Watch: Mitt Romney keeps photographers at a 150-foot distance -- at a newspaper association convention. [WaPost]
-> If Romney's 2002 gubernatorial bid is any hint, don't expect the candidate to embrace the "warm and fuzzy" persona this fall. Instead, look for him to go on the attack. [AP]
-> A Romney-Paul Ryan ticket? Some voters think its the perfect pairing. [WaPost]
-> Newt Gingrich, vowing to stay in the race, plans to gain traction with wins in North Carolina and Delaware coming into the convention. [WWAY]
-> Ron Paul's campaign went dark for 18 days last month and has only held one event this month, but he's not planning on dropping out of the race yet. [FoxNews]
-> Slate's David Weigel explains why he cast his ballot in D.C. for Jon Huntsman, a candidate who has been out of the race for three months. [Slate]
Where are they?
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-- Thomas Burr and Laura Schmitz