After S.C. visit, Lee to speak in Iowa. Count My Vote files petition to change caucus, convention system. LDS Church again weighs into same-sex marriage fight.
Happy Thursday. Sen. Mike Lee recently dropped by the early presidential primary state of South Carolina and is now headed to Iowa to speak. The Utah Republican is slated to speak in November to "750-1,000 Iowa activists who will play a crucial role in this critical 2013-2014 election cycle." [IowaRepublican]
Topping the news: The Count My Vote initiative filed paperwork with the Lieutenant Governor's Office to formally launch their bid to replace Utah's the long-running system of caucuses and conventions, with direct primaries instead. [Trib] [DNews] [KUTV] [Fox13] [UtahPolicy]
-> Sen. Mike Lee is claiming victory now that the House has given into pressures to pass a budget resolution that cuts funding for Obamacare. [Trib]
-> Former U.S. Attorney for Utah Brett Tolman told the Senate Judiciary Committee that mandatory minimum sentences that require lengthy sentences are overcrowding the prison population, overpunishing offenders and underserving the public. [Trib]
-> The LDS Church is urging members to contact their representatives over the gay marriage issue in Hawaii -- but not telling those members which side to be on. [Trib]
Tweet of the day: From @daveweigel: "The 'we don't want to shut down the government, we want Democrats to prevent it by appeasing these demands' argument makes a ton of sense"
From @PaulMurphysLaw: "Overheard a bunch of 9-year-old boys in the Capitol restroom: 'You just went in the Royal Bathroom.'"
Happy birthday: To The Tribune's Sheena McFarland.
Welcome: To the students enrolled in Professor Jason Perry's Legislative Process class at the S.J. Quinney School of Law who are avid readers of Political Cornflakes. We hope our morning email keeps you current on all things political.
In other news: A Utah investigation found a group producing and selling false documents to paperless immigrants. The paper trail led to gun and drug traffickers and mobile bordellos run by human traffickers holding women in modern slavery. [Trib]
-> Election officials say a secure system could be implemented where voters could sign petitions online. They said the technology exists to allow this to happen, and to be secure voters would register and get a PIN number. [Trib]
-> Bryan Schott wonders why Senate President Wayne Niederhauser warned senators against commenting on AG John Swallow and then decides to challenge the idea of an investigation. [UtahPolicy]
-> Federal regulations are stifling the oil and gas development in Utah's federal land that could generate $6.7 billion and 58,000 jobs, according to a conservative think tank. Critics disagree and say the study lacks rigor and is based on faulty assumptions. [Trib]
-> A Utah lawmaker is proposing that the state require bartenders to be CPR certified in case an emergency arises. Many representatives are critical of the proposal saying that the state has no business in that matter. [DNews]
-> You might be from Utah if ... Jeff Foxworthy, the comedian popular for redneck jokes will headline Gov. Gary Herbert's annual gala. Herbert's staff says that he has raised $675,000 from the event already. [Trib] [DNews]
-> Pat Bagley offers his take on the Republicans feelings toward the top 1%. [Trib]
-> A "slurry wall" that kept Ground Zero from flooding after 9/11 is coming to Utah. [Trib]
Nationally: President Barack Obama is under fire for comments made about his lack of power to halt mass deportations of immigrants living in the United States illegally. People against the deportations suggest that if Obama doesn't stop them, then his legacy will be cemented as the most anti-immigrant administration in history. [WaPost]
-> The GOP and the Democrats are fighting over another budget battle, this time over federal funding for food stamps. GOP members plan to cut $39 billion over the next ten years. [WaPost]
-> Lt. Gov. Greg Bell isn't the only politician jumping ship over money; this time Rep. Phil Gingrey, R-Ga., complained about his $172,000 salary. Here is a brief history of politicians concerned about wages. [WaPost]
-> Sen. Rand Paul said he's glad President Barack Obama never got arrested for drugs, otherwise it'd be a tragedy not to see him as such a great leader. [Trib]
Where are they?