Happy Friday!

Plastic straws are a new cultural flashpoint in the presidential race. Kamala Harris says the straws contribute to plastic pollution in oceans and should be banned. Donald Trump’s campaign mocks Harris and others as it sells its own Trump-branded plastic straws. Elizabeth Warren says it’s a sideshow meant to distract from larger environmental issues. [CNN]

Topping the news: Gov. Gary Herbert calls a special legislative session for Sept. 16 to address medical marijuana, changing the presidential primary date, census funding and beer storage. [Trib] [DNews]

-> Several conservative groups packed the Utah Board of Education meeting Thursday to protest a state law that says teachers can answer “spontaneous questions” from students about sex. [Trib] [DNews]

-> In what is usually the “100 Deadliest Days” of summer, Utah road fatalities plummeted by 40%. [Trib] [DNews]

Tweets of the day: From @scottwongDC: “Another major retailer takes action: @Walgreens asks its customers not to openly carry firearms in their stores”

-> From @jeneps: ‘Asked by Stephen Colbert if "he's going nuts" after his recent string of gaffes, Biden deadpans: "Well, look, the reason I came on the Jimmy Kimmel show is because I'm not."’

-> From @MauraBarrettNBC: ‘At today’s town hall in Eagle Grove, @SteveKingIA told a story about how he drank from a toilet at a migrant facility on the border when he last visited: “actually pretty good”’

Milestones and congratulations: The Hinkley Report airs its 100th episode today.

Behind the Headlines: Tribune Washington bureau chief Thomas Burr, reporter Lee Davidson and news columnist Robert Gehrke join KCPW’s Roger McDonough to talk about the week’s top stories, including Sen. Mike Lee’s visit to Russia. Every Friday at 9 a.m., stream “Behind the Headlines” at kcpw.org, or tune in to KCPW 88.3 FM or Utah Public Radio for the broadcast. Join the live conversation by calling (801) 355-TALK.

Also in the news: Utah’s proposed ‘conversion therapy’ ban is slated for a public hearing later this month, where LGBTQ advocates expect conservative groups will attempt to weaken the language. [Trib]

-> A Utah council of the Boy Scouts of America has laid off 21 employees following withdrawal from the scouts by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. [Trib]

-> A Utah woman who attempted to carry a 6-day-old baby out of the Philippines hidden inside a sling bag has been arrested at Manila’s airport and charged with human trafficking. [APviaTrib]

-> The former Federal Election Commission chairman from Utah takes a job at a D.C. law firm. [Trib]

-> Officials break ground for an 8-story expansion of the Huntsman Cancer Institute. [Trib]

-> Columnist Robert Gehrke discusses Russia, visa allowances and chess play. [Trib]

Nationally: Michigan State University will be fined a record $4.5 million over its handling of sexual abuse allegations against Larry Nassar, the sports doctor who treated Olympic gymnasts and was accused of sexually abusing more than 150 women. [NYTimes] [Politico]

-> Utah is among ten states and nearly two dozen members of Congress that are joining the National Rifle Association in supporting gun-maker Remington Arms as it fights a Connecticut court ruling involving liability for the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting. [APviaTrib]

-> Vitamin E has been pinpointed as a likely cause of the vaping-related lung disease outbreak, according to New York state officials. [Politico]

-> The Trump administration is attempting to send Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac — two mortgage giants that had been bailed out by taxpayers during the 2008 financial crisis — back to the private sector. [NYTimes]

-> Jason D. Greenblat, President Trump’s point person on talks between Israel and the Palestines, is leaving his position. [WaPost] [NYTimes]

-> A total of 99% of applicants were rejected from government student loan forgiveness program, even after Congress’s attempt to make it easier for borrows to apply for debt forgiveness. [CNN]

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