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GOP insiders: Help us Romney, save us from Trump. Herbert backs Supreme Court resolution of SB54 debacle. Lesbian couple, state join to petition overturning judge's order.

Happy Friday. Republican Party insiders are worried that Donald Trump or Ben Carson could actually emerge at the GOP's standard bearer and that it may cost the party the presidency and have down-ballot impacts. So now, again, they're looking to Mitt Romney as possibly the only one who could jump in the race and save the party from the Trump and Carson show. [" target="_blank">WaPost]

Topping the news: Gov. Gary Herbert said yesterday he would support the state joining the Utah Republican Party in asking the Supreme Court to settle a dispute over how candidates should be nominated. [" target="_blank">Trib]

-> Herbert refused to weigh in on the new same-sex family policy announced by the LDS Church. [" target="_blank">KUTV] [" target="_blank">Fox13]

-> The same-sex foster parents and state child welfare officials are filing a petition against a judge's order to remove an infant from the couple's Carbon County home because they are lesbians. [" target="_blank">Trib] [" target="_blank">DNews] [" target="_blank">KUTV] [" target="_blank">Fox13] Gov. Herbert said the judge's decision "puzzled" him. [" target="_blank">Trib]

-> If the creation of a new national monument in Utah is part of a public-lands deal organized by Rep. Rob Bishop and various stakeholders, Herbert said he's open to it. [" target="_blank">Trib] [" target="_blank">DNews] [" target="_blank">KUER]

-> The Charles Koch Foundation is funding a $1.54 million grant for Utah State University to hire two tenure-track professors and pay for programs and building costs in the business school. [" target="_blank">Trib] [" target="_blank">KUTV]

Tweets of the day: From" target="_blank">@politicalwire: "Remember last summer when everyone thought there was no way Trump would run for president? That was fun."

From" target="_blank">@LOLGOP: "The entire GOP primary is like Jeb Bush showed up as a your Tinder date and you're doing anything you can to get out of it."

From" target="_blank">@RexHuppke: "BREAKING: Ben Carson again insists there are Chinese forces in Syria, adding, "I have stabbed several of them""

From" target="_blank">@RobertGehrke: "One more: On whether he would go back in time and kill baby Hitler, Herbert said, 'Build the time machine and then we'll talk.'"

Happy Birthday:  Today to the Congressional Budget Office's Stephanie Hugie Barello, a native Utahn, and on Sunday to former state Rep. Neal Hendrickson.

Tune in: Tribune reporter Jennifer Dobner as well as government editor Dan Harrie and health, education and environment editor Rachel Piper and managing editor Dave Noyce join Jennifer Napier-Pearce to talk about the week's top news stories including fallout from the LDS church policy on same-sex couples and their children, a judge's ruling on a foster child being cared for by a lesbian couple and charter school growth. Listen to Behind the Headlines on KCPW or Utah Public Radio live at 9 a.m. MT. 

In other news: State Sen. Aaron Osmond is resigning from the Legislature to serve as president of the Utah College of Applied Technology. [" target="_blank">Trib] [" target="_blank">Fox13]

-> Rep. Rob Bishop said an ad attacking his efforts to reform the federal Land and Water Conservation Fund means he's on track. [" target="_blank">DNews]

-> Bishop said during an interview yesterday finds the apparent leak of Russia's plans for a nuclear torpedo system "fishy." [" target="_blank">DNews]

-> Controversy has erupted in the House District 40 special election held this week. [" target="_blank">UtahPolicy]

-> Bob Bernick and Bryan Schott discuss this week in politics, including the poll showing Utahns want their taxes hiked for education and the SB54 standing. [" target="_blank">UtahPolicy]

-> Construction next door to the Capitol Theatre likely damaged the facade. [" target="_blank">Trib]

-> Utah lawmakers renewed the lease for the annual Utah State Fair at its historic Salt Lake City location. [" target="_blank">Trib]

-> Students from the U. rallied Thursday for free tuition for all. [" target="_blank">DNews]

-> The U.S. 10th Circuit Court of Appeals will hear arguments in January on whether a judge correctly struck down parts of Utah's ban on polygamy in the "Sister Wives" case. [" target="_blank">Trib] [" target="_blank">KUTV] [" target="_blank">Fox13]

-> A tape of polygamist leader Warren Jeffs being questioned in a cage for hours was recently released. [" target="_blank">Fox13]

-> Utah is No. 1 in among states for clean energy job creation. [" target="_blank">DNews]

-> Salt Lake City's GREENbike program set a national ridership record in early November, passing 100,000 rides this season. [" target="_blank">KUTV]

-> The role of women in the government was debated during a meeting meant to set guidelines for Constitutional Congress. [" target="_blank">Fox13]

-> A Morgan County community is opposed to a construction company reopening a nearby gravel pit. [" target="_blank">Fox13] [" target="_blank">ABC4]

-> Pat Bagley shares his take on the "red planet." [" target="_blank">Trib]

-> Paul Rolly tells how Utah Republicans have struck out again in nonpartisan races throughout the state. [" target="_blank">Trib]

Nationally: The second Democratic 2016 presidential debate is tomorrow night in Iowa. [" target="_blank">Politico]

-> President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu have generated the "worst relationship between a U.S. president and an Israeli prime minister ever." [" target="_blank">HuffPost]

-> GOP candidate Donald Trump went on a 95-minute rant about what's wrong with the American people. [" target="_blank">WaPost]

-> Republican Candidate Marco Rubio has come under fire from fellow candidates like Ted Cruz for his immigration reform policy. [" target="_blank">HuffPost]

-> Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has revealed a plan that would aid coal communities that have been hit by the shift to clean energy. [" target="_blank">WSJ]

-> A poll shows Democratic candidate Bernie Sanders ahead of both Republican candidates Trump and Jeb Bush. [" target="_blank">TheHill]

Where are they?

  • Gov. Gary" target="_blank">Herbert heads to a Board of Examiners meeting, budget discussions and the Saluting Our Heroes luncheon. He later travels to St. George, where he will meet with county commissioners and eat at the Utah Association of Counties dinner. On Saturday he participates in a BYU Management Society event.
  • Lt. Gov. Spencer" target="_blank">Cox returns to Salt Lake City. Tomorrow he goes to the Care Cuts Gala.
  • SL Co. Mayor Ben" target="_blank">McAdams attends the National Association of Counties conference.
  • President Barack" target="_blank">Obama meets with Archbishop Joseph Kurtz, President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops; Cardinal Donald Wuerl, Archbishop of Washington; and Monsignor Ronny Jenkins, General Secretary of the USCCB. He eats lunch with Vice President Joe Biden. Later he sits down for a meeting with national security leaders to discuss the strategic importance of the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
  • Got a tip? A birthday, wedding or anniversary to announce? Email us at" target="_blank"> If you haven't already, sign up for our weekday email and get this sent directly to your inbox. [" target="_blank">Trib]

    — Thomas Burr and Mariah Noble" target="_blank"> and" target="_blank">