Chamber backs Matheson. Lee fights judicial nominee. DNC hits Romney.
Happy Friday. Ahead of Mitt Romney's speech at the Conservative Political Action Conference today, the DNC is out with a new video attempting to show Romney's flip-flops on several issues -- as well as some controversial comments by Ann Coulter, Donald Trump, Michele Bachmann and Rand Paul. [YouTube]
-> Meanwhile, Romney held court with donors last night at the J.W. Marriott in downtown Washington, D.C. where former Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt headed a panel on health care. Reporters weren't allowed inside.
Topping the news: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is offering its support for just one Democrat so far: Rep. Jim Matheson. [Trib]
-> Sen. Mike Lee continues his fight against President Barack Obama's appointments, voting against a judicial nominee with just five other Republican senators. [Trib]
-> In a state widely touted as having the world's best snow, Utah lawmakers agreed to make skiing and snowboarding the state's official sports. [Trib]
Tweets of the day: @RyanDWilcox: "Just received a report from security that bomb-sniffing dog "relieved" himself on @utahsenate floor today. @UtahReps to honor dog."
Happy birthday: Today to the Tribune's always inspiring Pat Bagley, and on Saturday to state Rep. Carol Spackman Moss, Jon2012Girl Mary Anne Huntsman and Corrections Department spokesman Steve Gehrke.
In other news: A state engineer has been asked to reconsider his decision last month to allow Green River water to be used for the first nuclear power plant proposed for Utah. [Trib]
-> Pat Bagley offers his take on Wall Street's poker-like games of chance. [Trib]
-> Paul Rolly digs deeper into the DABC, arguing it "just ain't what it used to be." [Trib]
-> Union Pacific settles pollution case with federal regulators, agreeing to pay $1.5 million in pollution violations. [Trib]
-> Taylor Oldroyd announces he's running for the Republican nomination for a new seat in the state House, representing east Lindon, northeast Orem and north Provo. [Herald]
-> Sen. Lee says the Obama administration is still "wed" to the idea of taxing some more than others. [HumanEvents]
-> At CPAC, Lee gets called Mr. Constitution, and he endorses two more candidates. [Trib]
-> My conservation with KCPW's Jeff Robinson about this week's political happenings. [KCPW]
2012 watch: A Super PAC supporting Ron Paul is found to be operated by a political activist steeped in conspiracy theories. [NBC]
-> Mitt Romney met privately with conservative leaders at the annual CPAC event to help Republicans skeptical of him to "feel comfortable" about his candidacy. [CNN]
-> All eyes are on Maine this weekend as the state holds the only contest for a couple weeks in the presidential race. [USAToday]
-> Romney and Rick Santorum are in a dead heat in a new Pennsylvania poll. [WaPost]
-> Ron Paul slams both Romney and Santorum for leaning too far left of the spectrum. [CNN]
-> As much as 20,000 of Utah's coyotes could have a bounty on their heads as lawmakers look to protect deer and cattle herds. [Trib]
-> The free-fare zone for UTA buses might come to an end in an effort to streamline costs. [Trib]
-> Could Utah earn more than $300 million a year from drilling? [Trib]
-> Utah hospital infection rates may soon be public after a bill to disclose the information won unanimous approval in a Senate committee. [Trib]
-> SLC Mayor Ralph Becker's plan to outlaw cars from idling for more than two minutes has met its match in a bill looking to overturn the measure. [Trib]
-> A House committee OKs a Hookah ban that would ban its use in public places, with a five-year exemption for hookah bars and e-cigarette shops. [Trib]
-> The Senate approves limits on fireworks after adding a midnight curfew. [Trib]
-> The reporting of U. student fees might have stricter guidelines after an audit revealed the school's informal practices. [Trib]
-> One lawmaker unveils a teacher employment bill that would rate salaries based on their performance in the classroom. [Trib]
Where are they?
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-- Thomas Burr and Laura Schmitz
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