News roundup: Will anti-Mormon voters still back Mitt?
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].
-> The head of the Democratic Party blasts Hatch for claiming that President Barack Obama will use Mitt Romney's Mormon faith against him this fall. [Trib] [ABC4] [AP] [Politico]
-> 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]
-> A Pew research study looks at the preferred words used for self-identification of ethnicity, finding a majority prefer the word "Hispanic" over "Latino." [Trib] [ABC4]
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]
-> Despite his hope to win his native state, Rick Santorum is slipping behind Romney in Pennsylvania polls [HuffPost], and is pleading with voters for their support. [LATimes]
-> 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?
Rep. Jason Chaffetz meets with Republican delegates.
Gov. Gary Herbert lunches at Utah Sports Commission's State of Sport awards ceremony.
Lt. Gov. Greg Bell eats at the Sports Commission's luncheon and hits the Juab County Convention.
SL Co. Mayor Peter Corroon goes to a media day event at the Millcreek Community Center.
SLC Mayor Ralph Becker eats breakfast with community council chairs, heads to a Redevelopment Agency funding meeting, attends a Utah Economic Development Professional Association meeting, hits a Salt Lake Council of Governments meeting and makes a final stop at the Sugar House streetcar meeting.
WVC Mayor Mike Winder meets with delegates in Millcreek, goes to a Joint Policy Action committee and then attends the Salt Lake Council of Governments.
President Barack Obama signs the Jumpstart Our Business Startups Act and then hosts a screening for the film, "To Kill a Mockingbird," in the White House theater.
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Thomas Burr and Laura SchmitzTwitter.com/thomaswburr