News roundup: Taliban commander: We'll capture more Americans
FILE - This file image provided by IntelCenter on Wednesday Dec. 8, 2010 shows a frame grab from a video released by the Taliban containing footage of a man believed to be Bowe Bergdahl, left. Afghanistan's Taliban says it has suspended "mediation" with the United States to exchange captive U.S. soldier Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five senior Taliban prisoners held in U.S. custody in Guantanamo Bay, halting at least temporarily what was considered the best chance yet of securing the 27-year-old's freedom since his capture in 2009. In a terse Pashto language statement emailed to the Associated Press on Sunday, Zabihullah Mujahed blamed the "current complex political situation in the country" for the suspension. (AP Photo/IntelCenter, File)
Taliban commander: We'll capture move American soldiers. Hatch for an 8th term. FEC complaint against Lee filed.
Happy Friday. After the White House deal to exchange five Taliban captives for U.S. Soldier Bowe Bergdahl, a Taliban commander says that there's little question the move makes the group more interested in capturing more Americans. The commander welcomed home the five "heroes" that had been held at Gitmo. [Time]
Topping the news: Sen. Orrin Hatch had pledged that his last election was, well, his last. But now the Utah Republican says that if he's close to reforming the tax code by the time his term is up he may run again. That would, for the record, be his 8th term. [Trib]
-> The Alliance for a Better Utah has filed a complaint with the Federal Elections Commission over the questions of money laundering to Sen. Mike Lee's 2010 campaign. [Trib] [DNews] [KUTV]
-> A federal judge granted a temporary, weeklong stay on a ruling that required the state to recognize the same-sex marriages in that occurred during the 17-day window in December. [Trib] [KUTV] [KSL] [Fox13]
Tweet of the day: From @RobertGehrke: "Unreal. Doug Wright had Mike Lee on the air, failed to ask a single question about money laundered to his campaign account."
Happy Birthday: On Saturday to the Sierra Club's Vanessa Pierce, and on Sunday to USU's Matthew LaPlante and friend of Cornflakes Derek Jensen.
In other news: Spencer Eccles, the executive director of the Governor's Office of Economic Development, announced his plans to resign from the position. [Trib][DNews]
-> Sen. Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, announced a new chief of staff. [Trib]
-> Salt Lake County officials may regulate the use of electronic cigarettes, similar to Davis County. [Trib]
-> Paul Rolly tells of several heartwarming stories of Utahns helping Utahns. [Trib]
-> The CATO Institute says UTA's TRAX line in Utah is meant to look "world class," but providing better bus routes would be more effective for transportation. [Trib]
-> Sen. Mike Lee visited with Pope Francis in the Vatican and said "he's a very humble man." [DNews]
Nationally: President Barack Obama said he will not apologize for his deal with the Taliban that freed Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl. [NYTimes] [WaPost] [WSJ] [Politico] Officials within the Obama administration also said they couldn't tell Congress of the trade deal for Bergdahl sooner because the Taliban threatened to kill Bergdahl if they did. [LATimes]
-> Senators reached an agreement with their bill to resolve issues in the nation's veterans hospital that includes hiring more doctors and diminishing wait times. [NYTimes] [WaPost]
-> The Senate approved Sylvia Mathews Burwell's nomination for secretary of Health and Human Services. [NYTimes] [WaPost] [WSJ] [Politico]
Where are they?
- Rep. Jason Chaffetz discusses district appointments.
- Gov. Gary Herbert speaks at the Primary Children's Cancer Research Center groundbreaking at the Huntsman Cancer Institute and meets with Spencer Eccles.
- Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox gives remarks at the ceremonial release of the 2014 Arches National Park quarter in Moab.
- SL Co. Mayor Ben McAdams cuts the ribbon at the Sugar House Draw grand opening, meets with county staff and attends the Special Olympics Utah 2014 summer games.
- President Barack Obama travels to the Normandy region of France and meets with WWII and post-9/11 U.S. veterans. He then speaks at the 70th French-American Commemoration D-Day ceremony, participates in a Heads of State lunch, and attends an international ceremony at Sword Beach. Obama later returns to Paris, meets with embassy staff and travels home to the White House.
Got a tip? A birthday, wedding or anniversary to announce? Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you haven't already, sign up for our weekday email and get this sent directly to your inbox. [Trib]
-- Thomas Burr and Courtney Tanner
Twitter.com/thomaswburr and Twitter.com/CourtneyLTanner
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