Brave tourists break law to see D.C. monuments. More than half of Utahns disapprove of Sen. Lee. Obama approval down to 37 percent; Congress tanked to 5 percent.
Happy Thursday. Washington's iconic monuments are closed because of the government shutdown, but that hasn't stopped some brave tourists from bypassing signs and barriers to continue their touristy ways. BuzzFeed has photo evidence of the folks -- and squirrels -- who brazenly break the law to see their national monuments. [BuzzFeed]
Topping the news: More than half of Utahns disapprove of Sen. Mike Lee's performance, and 57 percent want Lee to be more conciliatory and compromise on a budget, according to a poll done by the Center For the Study of Elections and Democracy at Brigham Young University. [Trib] [KUTV] [DNews]
-> After several attempts, a Utah family was able to buy health insurance through the new Affordable Care Act exchange for $123 a month. [Trib]
Tweet of the day: From @pourmecoffee: "Having to fund government every month or it gets taken away like a rent-to-own sectional couch maybe not the best system ever."
From @DannyZuker: "Ted Cruz: Because Canada could never destroy us militarily."
-> From @shariv67: "Due to the FDA shutdown, candy corn now counts as a vegetable."
Happy birthday: To Leavitt Partners CEO and president, Rich McKeown
Shutdown, day 10: A new AP poll shows that President Barack Obama has hit a record-low approval rating of 37 percent, while Congress' approval rating is at a dismal 5 percent approval rating. [AP]
-> If life is a popularity contest, Congress is losing to hemorrhoids, dog poop and cockroaches, but still beats out Honey Boo Boo and twerking. [Trib]
-> Under concerns of a looming default, the White House announced a series of meeting with top lawmakers to focus on the shutdown and the political logjam. [WaPost]
-> Speaking of: Rep. Jim Matheson met with President Barack Obama with other Democrats with hopes to end the political stalemate in Washington. [Trib]
-> The Utah National Guard is not purchasing a $47,000 mechanical bull as earlier reported. The guard had a deal to buy the bull, but the shutdown ended the all funding. [Trib]
-> The closure of Zion National Park has turned adjacent Springdale into a ghost town. [Trib]
-> The thousands of federal employees furloughed the shutdown have filed for Utah unemployment insurance, causing a three-and-a-half times spike of the normal claim rate. [Trib]
-> State Sen. Steve Urquhart is inviting residents to take a stroll in Zions National Park with him as a First Amendment-protected statement by citizens frustrated with the federal government. [Trib]
-> While many services provided by the federal government are shut down, the House and Senate gyms are still open for members of Congress to use. [Trib]
-> Salt Lake County can withstand the federal shutdown with little impact for the month, but if the stalemate continues the county could face problems funding the Women, Infants, and Children program. [Trib]
In other news: Former state lawmakers Carl Wimmer is considering another bid for the Legislature to take the seat of Rep. Spencer Cox who has been nominated for lieutenant governor. [UtahPolicy]
-> Bryan Schott says Sen. Lee may be the best gift to the County My Vote effort to jettison caucuses. [UtahPolicy]
-> The state has hired a consultant to help look at options for relocating the prison. [Trib]
-> Gov. Gary Herbert spoke to public and higher education officials in a statewide education summit and expressed his appreciation and gratitude for them. Critics of Herbert accused him of taking softball questions and are wanting a plan to achieve the state's goals. [DNews] [Fox13]
-> Analysts are saying the glitches for the website healthcare.gov are because the government buys outdated technology and usually outsources jobs to contractors who aren't experts in developing user-friendly websites. [WaPost]
-> A man decided to mow the Lincoln Memorial's grounds in a sense of duty, and because no one else was taking care of them. Police asked him to stop for liability reasons, but not before he was finished. [WaPost]
Where are they?