Hatch wins Liljenquist's caucus. Expert: Romney's moderation tied to Mormon upbringing. Lee: Privatize Medicare.
Happy Friday. Some 4,000 Utahns now hold Sen. Orrin Hatch's fate in their hands after last night's Republican caucuses. It's pretty impossible to know now how the delegates will vote on April 21, though Hatch scored some nice anecdotal wins -- including former state Sen. Dan Liljenquist's home caucus. [Trib] [Fox13] [ABC4] [StandEx] [DNews] [UtahPolicy]
-> By the numbers: 30,000 voters looked up their caucus locations at utgop.org; 14,000 live phone calls were made from the Utah Republican Party; 20,000 yard signs and 260,000 door hangers were distributed; 10 days of TV and radio commercials aired; and 1,400 voters were trained as "Caucus Ambassadors." (h/t Ivan Dubios)
Topping the news: On the campaign trail again, Vice President Joe Biden seems to have roots all over. Some he learned from family stories but much of it he found out from a genealogist who used the LDS Church's Family History Library. [WaPost] [NYTimes]
Happy Birthday: to state Reps. Kraig Powell, Ronda Menlove and Stephen Sandstrom and also to SLC Councilman Charlie Luke.
Congrats: The White House announced its nearly 150 spring interns recently and the only Utahn who made the cut is Weber State's Kirsten Anderson. We hope Kirsten enjoys her semester in Washington.
Tweet of the day: @Sen_JValentine: "So cool. Cafeteria full on caucus night. Ten years ago I thought 26 [was] a lot of attendees, now 206."
In other news: Paul Rolly argues that Utah's liquor laws keep everyone young with restaurants carding even the elderly. [Trib]
-> SL Co. Mayor race is attracting a wide range of contenders, already boasting six filed candidates. [Trib]
-> FreedomWorks chief says in an op-ed that Hatch is no conservative and takes issue with charges that his organization is outsiders meddling in Utah's race. [Politico]
-> Bryan Schott and Bob Bernick talk politics in their weekly videocast and introduce their new sponsor. [UtahPolicy]
-> Bernick says the state's convention system isn't really fair. [UtahPolicy]
-> The Humane Society urges Herbert to veto the "ag-gag" bill that would outlaw filming of animal treatment on agricultural farms. [Herald]
-> Opponents are calling for a ban on blended nuclear waste in Utah and Friday is the last day of public comment to affect change. [Fox13]
-> The feds give Utah $3 million to boost low-achieving schools from the Education Department's School Improvement Grants program. [ABC4]
-> On the national front, an LDS Church expert says Romney's political moderation is a product of his Mormon culture. [HuffPost]
-> Though Rick Santorum and Newt Gingrich are far behind Romney in the delegate count, the former Massachusetts governor is now at risk of losing his lead. [TheHill]
-> Gingrich basks in the spotlight shed by President Barack Obama as his White House continues to go after the candidate over gas prices. [LATimes]
-> Romney walks back his Planned Parenthood rhetoric, saying he doesn't want to shutter the organization just strip all of its federal money. [SunTimes]
-> Ron Paul speaks before a student-heavy crowd at the University of Missouri campus, saying change is affected by small actions. [ColumbiaTrib]
Where are they?
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