Saturday, February 17, 2018

2018 General Session - Week 4

Week Four moved at a steady pace.  Here is the week in pictures.

The week started out with a 7am gathering of our Northern Utah Caucus.  As you can tell from the vantage point of the photo, I was a few minutes late to the meeting. 

Students treated us to a "Lion Dance" during lunch this week. 

Rob Bishop came to visit us at the Capitol and offered a report to our caucus.  The bottom line:  Washington is broken...still.  The Congress' concentration of power in House and Senate Leadership means that big legislation is always pushed forward via panicked emergency deadlines rather than thoughtful discussion and debate.  In my opinion, the way that Congress has organized itself prevents a change, even if the people are replaced.

Rep. Becky Edwards presented the bill to replace the statue of Philo Farnsworth at the U.S. Capitol with the statue of March Hughes Cannon.  Here Rep. Edwards speaks with the mural of Martha Hughes Cannon above her and her Senate Sponsor, Senator Todd Weiler, behind her.  

We had lunch at the Joseph Smith Memorial building with Deseret Media to discuss a bill that eliminates non-compete agreements for the news media.  Needless to say, they don't like the bill.  This lunch was held after a contentious committee meeting where the bill was passed on a split vote. I support the idea of eliminating non-compete abuses.  However, the bill is too broad in its current form and I voted against it in committee.  The most ironic part of the lunch is that Deseret Media appears to be a good actor in the industry while all the complaints we are getting from industry folks about abuses come from other media outlets.  The good news out of all this is that, while sitting next to Kevin Eubank, I learned his favorite place to ski is Snowbasin.      

Sadly, my National Popular Vote bill has inspired a pageant of ugliness in some uncivil corners of my party.  Look for an exciting post about 'Love' Letters I received on this topic at the end of the Session.  I have saved them all.   

Lobbyists of all types crowd the doors of the House Chamber.

Our annual Speaker's Dinner this year was held on the floor of the Vivint Arena.  It was a sentimental event and a nice way to honor Speaker Hughes. 

We were paid a visit by the Consul General of Canada Stephane Lessard.  He discussed the problems facing free trade between Canada and America and their desire to maintain trade between our countries.  Over 76,000 Utah jobs are tied to trade with Canada.  Exiting NAFTA would cost Utah approximately 18k-36k jobs.  NAFTA is a big deal for our state. 

Students from Ogden High School came up to the Capitol to learn how our system works. 

My daughter Wynnie came up to pal around with me for a day. 

Quote of the Week

"I support this bill...regardless who the sponsor is."

- Rep. Tim Quinn

Mr. Peterson's Bills

HB20 - Political Acitivies and Elections - This bill is sitting on the House Concurrence calendar and will be voted on Tuesday before going to the Governor's desk.

HB80 - Child Placement Amendments - This bill is on the Senate 2nd Reading Calendar.

HB110 - Lobbyist Licencing Amendments - This bill is scheduled to be heard at committee Tuesday, February 20th.

HB126 - Offender Housing Amendments - This bill was substituted and passed out of Senate Committee unanimously.  It will now wait on the Senate 2nd Reading Calendar while we prioritize funding.

HB193 - National Popular Vote Interstate Compact - This bill is still in possession of our Government Operations Committee.

HB270 - Teacher Employment Amendments - This bill passed House Committee unanimously and was placed passed the House on the Consent Calendar.  It now goes to Senate Committee for a hearing. 

HB384 - Trust Deeds and Statute of Limitations - This bill has been numbered and has been assigned to the House Judiciary Committee.


  1. I've been watching your five sponsored bills. The Offender Housing bill will hopefully pass. Maybe more research and data gathering would've made this easier, like more knowledge of the cost and impact to other cities. I noticed you also voted against women's rights on Feb. 5 & 7. Why do you go against 50% of Utah's population? You have daughters yourself. This makes no sense. Will you be having a townhall during the session or are you too busy to talk to constituents? Also, was wondering when you might get a chance to respond to the email I sent you a year ago?

  2. Nina, I tend to ignore the complaints of the staff of my political opponent.

  3. So let me follow up again. I got a call from a guy named "Tim" claiming to be a constituent and wondering why I don't talk to constituents. Another person also alerted to me to your Facebook thread. On your thread you wrote a response to my above response but you didn't submit it. Let me quote it and then respond to you. "Wow are you serious? I don't work for Kathie. I am your constituent. So just to be clear you don't respond to constituents?"

    Here is my response to this quote you posted on your FB thread:

    Last election you openly opposed my candidacy and were one of my harshest critics during the campaign. You took every opportunity to publicly malign my intentions and subvert my message. At the same time you were a cheerleader for my opponent. It is fine to disagree and there are people in our community who supported my opponent but maintain a relationship with me. Reasonable minds can disagree and that is just fine. With that being said, your record is not one of conciliation. Rather, your effort is to antagonize me into making a misstatement to use as fodder for political purposes. Hence, you instantaneous screenshot and posting of my response to you today and your attempt to spread it far and wide among Democrat operatives and activists in Weber County. Let's be frank Nina. You have trolled me for two years on Facebook. The likelihood of us having a productive conversation is limited because of that. You will have to forgive me for avoiding engagement with those who only want to fight.

  4. Hi Jeremy, I'm pretty sure I submitted that comment. Maybe I didn't, but I thought I did.

    Last election I did openly oppose your candidacy. I was a harsh critic and will continue to be. That's my job as an American. My effort is not to antagonize you, it is to get answers from you. You are known by many not to respond to constituents.

    Yes, I did screenshot your response, but it was not instantaneous, it was several hours later. I don't know what you're trying to prove by saying that.

    I have not trolled you for two years, I have tried to get answers from you for two years. I am dismayed that you have never responded to a letter I regarded as an important issue, which by the way, was sent before Kathie ever knocked on my door and introduced herself. I tried to have a productive conversation with you, but you did not respond to my emails. Don't put this on me Jeremy. You have a responsibility to your constituents, if you don't respond to them, they may get upset.

    I will continue to question your intentions. I will continue to ask for town halls. You proved a long time ago that you didn't want to represent me. You proved it when you made up a lie about me working for Kathie (not surprising coming from the same guy that made up lies about Kathie). And you proved it again with your backhanded comments in this response. But I will say, as a woman, I am not surprised.

  5. Nina, I am glad your effort is not to antagonize. This may be a good opportunity to talk about how to ask the right questions to promote engagement.

    Some ways are better than others at promoting conversation. For instance "Why did you vote agaisnt 50% of your district" is kind of like asking "When did you stop beating your wife?" There is no good answer to this and it appears like a 'gotcha' question. The best way to ask a question of an office holder is "I saw you voted (yea or nay) on a bill, can you share your position with me on this subject?"

    Based on our history, I know we disagree on most issues. I hope we can move forward with a fruitful discussion of viewpoints and perspectives (even if they are different) in the future without the combativeness and hostility.

    Thanks again for your response.

  6. Jeremy from reading the above thread you have the patience of Job. You deserve sainthood or a Congressional Medal of Honor.


Welcome! Your comments and thoughts are greatly appreciated. Criticism, insights, questions and queries are always welcome. However, please be civil and composed in your presentation. I moderate comments, so be patient while waiting for your comment to appear. Debate is welcome, trolling is not.