Obama to talk immigration. Burbank backs Obama on guns. Lockhart: Veto us, governor.
Happy Tuesday. Spurred along by several senators, President Barack Obama heads to Las Vegas today to talk about passing comprehensive immigration reform and quickly instead of debating it over and over again. It's been years since immigration was a serious topic on Capitol Hill, and Obama wants to use the next few months to press for action. [HuffPost]
Topping the news: Sen. Mike Lee bailed out of the bipartisan working group that debuted a massive immigration reform bill yesterday, saying that he couldn't get on board with a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants. [Trib] Lee said the amnesty proposal gives preference to illegal immigrants over those who immigrate within the law. [WaPost]
-> Salt Lake City Police Chief Chris Burbank joined a group of other top cops at the White House to talk about gun control. [Trib]
-> Top lawmaker House Speaker Becky Lockhart called on lawmakers to be more judicious with proposing legislation, and urged Gov. Gary Herbert to not be afraid to use his veto pen. Lockhart also had tough words for the federal government. [Trib][DNews] [Herald] [UtahPolicy]
-> Three quarters of Utahns favor allowing a candidate on a primary ballot despite the outcome of a party's convention. [UtahPolicy]
Tweets of the day: From @JimDabakis: "Sitting in the Senate for the first time, moved by posting of the flag, national anthem, and the ringing Choir. Feeling like Boehner."
And from @redsoxunixgeek: "Dude. @HollyOnTheHill and @BenMcAdams can you sit down with @JimDabakis and teach him how to tweet snark from the #UtLeg correctly?"
In other news: Utah residents give President Barack Obama the lowest approval rating of any state in the country, for the second year in a row. [Trib]
-> Yeah Samake, a candidate for Mali's presidency and a BYU graduate, gives his view on the current events in Mali and what it means for the African nation's future. [WaTimes]
From the Hill: You can find today's legislative schedule here, with information on committee and subcommittee meetings. [Trib]
-> Rep. Kraig Powell says he's planning on running a bill that would add an explainer to taxpayers in their local property tax, a move that would indicate that some of their dollars are going to charter schools. [Trib]
-> Sen. Margaret Dayton talks about her commute to the state Capitol from the Senate floor. [SenateSite]
-> Gov. Herbert calls for a focus on education during this year's session. [DNews]
-> Pat Bagley's take on smog vs. Utah politicians. [Trib]
-> A rundown on the Senate news on the first day, courtesy of Ric Cantrell's minions. [SenateSite]
-> Three ethics reforms bills that deal with cracking down on "election shenanigans" passed out of a committee and will be heard on the House floor. [Trib]
-> College readiness and degree completion will be big issues for lawmakers this season, with bills in the works to implement a set of learning standards to prepare high schoolers for university-level classes. [DNews]
-> Republicans are backing a bill that allows independent voters to switch parties for a primary ballot. [UtahPolicy]
-> The Utah Senate kicked off today with a stern word about spending from Senate President Wayne Niederhauser. [Trib]
-> The chief justice of the Utah Supreme Court says that the state's courts have been doing well even with tighter budgets, and called on lawmakers to pass a bill adding two new judges to the Duchesne regionan area he says is underserved. [Trib] [DNews]
-> Democrats from both chambers met with Latino media groups to promise action on education issues, while urging the outlets to cover the legislative session. [Trib]
-> Sen. John Valentine wants to add 40 new seats to the U's med schoolcomplete with $56 million in initial fundingbut only for students with Utah ties. [Herald]
Nationally: Despite Sen. Lee's attempt to include an amendment that would require every dollar spent to be cut elsewhere in the budget, a $50.5 million Hurricane Sandy relief package passed the Senate last night. [WaPost]
-> President Obama revealed that he enjoys skeet shooting at Camp David in response to a recurring question of gun rights advocates. [WaPost]
Where are they?
Utah Gov. Gary Herbert hits the Charitable Fun 1% club, meets with Rep. Paul Ray, meets with UTA and UDOT to discuss air quality, prepares for his State of the State speech and meets with House Speaker Becky Lockhart and Senate President Wayne Niederhauser.
SLC Mayor Ralph Becker meets with his department directors, gets a meeting about a proposed performing arts center, and meets with Discovery Gateway Museum CEO Maria Farrington.
President Barack Obama flies to Las Vegas in the morning to speak on immigration reform, and returns to Washington in the evening.
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Thomas Burr and Emily AndrewsTwitter.com/thomaswburr and Twitter.com/emilytandrews