Salt Lake tops Chicago. Hatch, Chaffetz want Todd Akin to go. 76 days to the election.
Happy Wednesday. A new NBC/Wall Street Journal poll shows President Barack Obama maintains a 4 percentage point lead nationwide and a 3 point advantage in swing states, indicating that the selection of Paul Ryan didn't give GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney a major boost in public opinion. [NBCNews] [WSJ] [NPR]
Topping the news: Romney joins about every other major Republican in pressuring Rep. Todd Akin to get out of the Senate race in Missouri after his "legitimate rape" comment. But Akin says he's here to stay. [Post-Dispatch] [WaPost] [NYTimes] [FoxNews] [CNN]
-> Sen. Orrin Hatch says Akin "may be a sincere man, but what he said was insensitive and wrong. For the good of the people of Missouri and the nation, I urge him to step aside today." [Trib]
-> The Republican Party isn't budging on the issue of abortion, preparing to adopt a platform that doesn't include any exceptions for rape or incest. [Trib]
-> Joel Kotkin says Romney should embrace his Mormonism and contrasts prosperous Salt Lake City with what he says is a dysfunctional Chicago. [Beast]
Tweet of the day: From @elmorse: "It's like @ToddAkin is screwing the GOP even though they asked him not to. There should be a word for that."
Happy Birthday: to Ali Sadler, ASUU Director of Government Relations and a Utah delegate to the 2012 Democratic National Convention.
In Memoriam: Jim Judd, the union leader and Utah Democratic vice chairman, will be laid to rest on Thursday, with a celebration of his life taking place tonight. Details are in his obit, which ends this way: "In lieu of flowers, they family has requested you register to vote and vote on Nov. 6." [Trib]
Clarification: Hatch campaign manager Dave Hansen emailed to say that despite Cornflakes lead in yesterday to Howell's complaints about the lack of debates, there will be debates in the campaign when voters are paying attention and not in August when Hatch's schedule is already set. Our apologies for misconstruing his words.
In other news: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce endorsed Rep. Jim Matheson, one of the few Democrats to earn the business group's backing, while Mia Love launches her first television ad. [Trib] [DNews] [UtahPolicy]
-> Donna McAleer tries to hit Rep. Rob Bishop on the rape issue, tying it to a bill he cosponsored last year. Bishop says she has her facts all mixed up. [Trib]
-> Gov. Gary Herbert creates an Office of Management and Budget and names Kristen Cox to lead it. [Trib]
-> Salt Lake County voters will have the final say on a $47 million bond for park upgrades. [Trib]
-> Pat Bagley gives his take on Mia Love's upcoming GOP convention speech. [Trib]
-> Paul Rolly tells of a Uintah County commissioner who didn't fare well before a House Committee. [Trib]
-> Senate challengers jabbed at Hatch in a debate carried live on radio. [Trib]
Convention-al news: Tropical storm Isaac could turn into a hurricane and some think it is headed straight for Tampa and the Republican National Convention. [TampaBay]
-> The GOP convention theme is "We Built This." [FoxNews]
-> The Daily Herald of Provo unveils a GOP convention blog written by Utahns. First up is state Sen. Margaret Dayton. [Herald]
-> The Democratic gathering in Charlotte lacks the star power of Denver in 2008, but Eva Longoria has been giving a speaking slot. [TheHill]
2012 watch: Romney and Obama talk about their faith with Cathedral Age, with Romney seeming to hit at Mormon criticism, while Obama talked about dealing with those who question whether he is really a christian. [LATimes]
-> Obama takes his 10th trip to Ohio and his Romney on the issue of education. [CBSNews]
-> Romney's favorite poem to recite on the campaign trail came from the Koch family. [WaPost]
-> Paul Ryan told Sean Hannity that he has more foreign policy experience than Obama did in 2008. [TheHill]
-> Romney takes a shot at Obama's campaign spending and promises to use his money more wisely. [WaPost]
-> Joe Biden calls Republicans "squealing pigs" for opposing new Wall Street regulations. [ABCNews]
Where are they?
-- Matt Canham
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