Saturday, April 26, 2008


The Utah County Republican Convention was this morning at Orem High School. (I will fill in more details later. I just wanted to get the basics down.) Sorry, I wish I had better pictures.

Chris & I arrived around 7:00 a.m. I thought the front lawn, with all the signs, looked like a political graveyard!

First we picked up our credentials.
Then we went to visit Candidate Alley.

They had the Central Committee Meeting at 7:30 a.m.

Senate Caucuses were next. We are in District 13 so we got to listen to Lane Henderson & Mark Madsen.

Then we went to our Legislative Caucus Meetings. We are in District 61. We got to hear Lisa Shepherd & Keith Grover speak. Then we got to vote on which one we wanted to be our representative. After we placed our ballot into the cardboard ballot box, we were off to the General Session.
At the General Session there were lots of speeches, the presenting of the Regan Award, and at the end they gave the election results. They spoke in the order of the pictures below.

Senate President John Valentine gave introductions.Then there was a financial review, credentials report (92% of delegates were in attendance), ratification and rules . Then there was a nomination and ratification of Larry Elertson for County Commissioner. Then Marian Monnahan, county chair, gave the county report.
The Reagan Award was presented to Bryan Thompson, Utah County Clerk.

Orrin Hatch - U.S. Senator
Bob Bennett - U.S. Senator
Chris Cannon - U.S. Representative Gary Herbert - Lieutenant Governor Mark Shurtleff - Attorney General Merrill Cook - running for U.S. Representative District 2 Kenneth Gray - running for U.S. Representative District 2 Brian Jenkins - running for U.S. Representative District 2 Bill Dew - running for U.S. Representative District 2 Donald Ferguson - running for U.S. Representative District 2 David Leavitt - running for U.S. Representative District 3 Jason Chaffetz - running for U.S. Representative District 3

Joe Ferguson - running for U.S. Representative District 3

Chuck Smith - running for Governor

Richard Ellis - running for State Treasurer
Mark Walker - running for State Treasurer

Senate 16
  • Jacqueline deGaston
  • Curt Bramble - 67%
  • James O'Neal

House 56

  • Kenneth Sumsion -96%
  • Jared Sepulveda

House 57

  • Craig Frank 68%
  • Kim Robinson
  • Jennifer Baptista
House 58
  • Paul Newton
  • Stephen Sandstrom 63%

House 60

  • Brad Daw - 60.4%
  • Linda Houskeeper
House 61

  • Lisa Shepherd
  • Keith Grover - 60.6%
House 62
  • Chris Herrod - 66%
  • David Starling
House 65
  • Aaron Tilton
  • Francis Gibson 60.8%
House 66
  • Chance Williams
  • Mike Morley - 82%
There will not be a primary because every race had a candidate that won by at least 60%. All the incumbents won, except for House 65.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

State House of Representatives

I've been hearing a lot about how the different candidates want to represent me, to be my voice. At the county convention, on Saturday, I will get to vote for who I want to be the Utah State Representative for District 61.

I decided to find out more about what a state representative’s responsibilities and duties are. I read a lot of legal jargon and titles to lots of meetings online, but was having a hard time finding any "down to earth" information. With the little knowledge I had I decided to go to the source and ask some representatives about their responsibilities in regard to all these meetings that I read about.

I didn't even know the half of it!!! I learned that we have a lot of great representatives up and down our state. I truly have learned a lot and thank them for taking time out of their busy schedules to help me out.

Here's what I learned:

PRE-SESSION & PRE-INTERIM MEETINGS: Committee chairs and leadership are to attend these. They usually deal with budget issues at these meetings.

GENERAL SESSION: At the beginning of every year there is a general session that is required by law for them to attend. It's 45 consecutive days. This is where they make their bills and try to get them to pass to become a law. (This is why I put that School House Rock video on the blog. After learning about all that goes on I was reminded of those videos!) Each representative is also appointed to committees during the general session that usually meet during floor time. These are called Standing committees. The public is allowed to go to these to comment and listen.

INTERIM (time between general sessions): On the 3rd Wednesday of every month (often called Interim Day) April - November (except for 1 summer month, so they can attend National Conference Meetings) there are Interim Committee Meetings. Each representative is appointed to 2 committees. One committee will meet in the morning (9:a.m.) and one in the afternoon (2:p.m.). These are official legislative meetings, though not required by law to attend. Their pay is based on their attendance to these meetings. Most legislators replied that these meetings were mandatory and important to attend if they wanted to represent their districts. At these meetings they prioritize a list of topics to study, receive statutory reports from different state agencies, they make proposals and recommendations. The public is invited to these meetings and can make comments and presentations. These are the meetings where policy is being made (not put into bill or law, but the groundwork).

CAUCUS MEETINGS (not the one in March for everyone, but ones for the legislators on Capital Hill): These are not mandatory meetings but the legislators feel that if they don't attend, the leadership will not be as supportive of them.

TASK FORCE MEETINGS: Committee chairs and senior members are usually assigned to go. They are created for in-depth study of the certain areas. They generally meet 4-5 times a year. It just depends on how much work needs to be done. No first term legislators were assigned to these. This year the Task Forces are for Health Systems Reform, Immigration, and Higher Education Governance.

APPROPRIATION COMMITTEES: The governor prepares a budget for the legislature to review and approve. Each legislator is appointed to one of the 10 subcommittees. Each subcommittee reviews a specific portion of the budget and makes recommendations. The Executive Appropriations Committee (leadership of both parties in the House and the Senate) then alter and approve the budget and pass as the final appropriations bill. Then it's the Governor and Executive Branch's responsibility to administer to it.

VARIOUS COUNCIL & COMMISSION MEETINGS (i.e. Council of State Governments, National Council of State Legislators, ALEX, Tax Review Commission, Welfare Legislative Oversite Committee, International Trade Commission, and so on ...): Committee chairs and senior members are usually assigned to go. They meet from 2-7 times a year (more if mandated). It just depends on how much work needs to be done.

OTHER: They are often invited to meetings held by various groups (i.e. Public Education, Association of Governments, law enforcement groups, public health officials, Small Business Associations, realty groups, political party groups, and so on ...) so they can become informed in those areas. They may attend their local meetings, like county commission. They will attend meetings where their bill will be signed into law, etc.

It seems like a lot of work, meetings, and time for part time pay!


I find it interesting that so many older delegates can't seem to figure out why there are candidates running against the incumbents. I have heard this at nearly all of the candidate meetings I've been to. They are often quoted as saying, "Why would anyone want to run against a perfectly good Republican incumbent?"

I like playing and watching sports. When I was in high school I ran cross country. The girls team won Nationals every year I ran. Yes, that means the high school running judges voted that our team was first in the nation. One year this was only determined after judges ran our state course and deemed it harder than another state's course. We had an awesome team. I was not one of the best runners. I occasionally ran in a varsity meet, but mostly I ran JV. There were times that our JV team would run in a meet as a Varsity team and we would win. Our team was only this good because there was so much competition amongst our own team, we had depth. We pushed each other to be better. We spent a lot of time together. We were friends. When it came time to race, we prayed as a team and then we each went out and tried our best. It wasn't just an individual sport. We didn't want to let each other down.

I think it's only right that we have competition amongst our own party. Not all of us think exactly the same. There are other opinions out there. We all want to be represented in a way that doesn't make us cringe!

By having competition we force the incumbent to get out and talk to the people. They have to reconnect, listen, and really find out what's going on. It gives us, the people, a chance to evaluate how they have been representing us. We really should take the opportunity to look into it and see that they have been doing what they promised they would. It allows the incumbent to realize there are perhaps areas that they need to improve and possibly change. I believe if the candidate is re-elected, than this process will make them a better representative for the people.

For the challenger this is a great process also. They are able to come in with a fresh pair of eyes, a new perspective. They often have new ideas and issues that they feel are important to address. They remind us that we do have a say in how we should be represented and that sometimes change is good. Besides they allow us to take part in the voting process which is one of the reasons why we love America so much!!!

I wish all delegates and voters for that matter would really look at the candidates. Look at what they stand for. Make a decision based on promises and performance. Don't just assume because they were elected before that they are the best person for the job.

Our Republican party is strong here in Utah County and we want it to stay that way! These challenges within our own party will only make our representatives better.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Meet the Candidates

The Utah County Republican Party will be sponsoring a Meet the Candidates night for our District 61 House of Representatives candidates tomorrow, Wednesday, April 23, from 7:30 - 8:30 p.m. at **CHERRY HILL ELEMENTARY** (250 E. 1650 S., Orem). We will be meeting in the MEDIA CENTER.

The format for this event will be as follows: Each candidate will be given up to 10 minutes to address the audience (I believe that Keith Grover is speaking first, then Lisa Shepherd). After the candidates speak they will adjourn to their individual tables, where they will spend the remainder of the time answering questions from delegates.

I hope that all of our delegates will go to that meeting and take really good notes for me. I am going to try and get there as soon as I can, but I will miss the candidate presentation part. I have to coach at my daughters soccer game. It's the last game of the season.

Earth Day

Happy Earth Day!

Monday, April 21, 2008

School House Rock

I'm Just a Bill!

Do you remember this?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Call to Convention

One week to go! I'm very excited to take part in my first convention. It's the county convention held next Saturday (April 26th) at Orem High School. We got our cards a week or so ago, but I knew then it was still a long way off. Now it's just a week away - Yahoo!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Chris Gomm-County Delegate

I've had a lot of fun attending all of the meetings put on by Candidates, it has been very educational and eye opening. It doesn't take very long to decide if you agree or not with someone when it is a face to face meeting.

I haven't posted my experiences with those meetings because as a County Delegate the only race that will be relevant for me at convention is the State House Rep. 61 race.

I would like to let you know that I will be supporting Lisa Shepherd in that race. I have known Lisa for about 12 years and been able to observe her in many situations. She has been an excellent coach to my children and a great example of how to be involved in her community. She has always proven to be an extremely honest person and someone you can count on. If I have been out of the loop on issues from time to time, I can expect Lisa to be educated on those issues and able to direct me to good information. I'm not sure how she has the time and energy to be every where at once, but that is the impression that is given. She will be a good voice for the people of our neighborhoods and allow us to have a voice while keeping us informed.

Lisa is someone who will be where she says she will be and do the things she said she would do, which to me is a big deal when so many think that once elected they are no longer accountable to those that put them in office.

I look forward to hearing from other delegates.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

New Vice Chair

Terry Ventura has been our vice chair. She has a scheduling conflict with the county convention. They won't let her vote ahead of time. She wants to be sure that her vote counts and that we are not one delegate short. The only way for this to happen was for her to resign. I thank her for her willingness to serve and for her wanting to be sure that there was a delegate in her place for the convention. I know that this was a hard decision because she really wanted to be the vice chair. Luke Ray will now be the vice chair.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Mark Walker - running for State Treasurer

Here's what Mark had to say:

WHAT A TREASURER DOES: He says that it's a full time job with offices at the Capital. He says a treasurer can't issue debt or invest money in whatever he likes. The legislature decides where to spend the money. The Utah Money Management Act tells the treasurer what investments he can make. He does invest money and watches bonding, but only in funds that the Utah Money Management Act allows. This office has about 11 employees. (Christy's side note: it sounds like he is in charge of the money, he writes the checks, but he doesn't decide where it goes)

WHAT MARK WOULD DO: Mark says a Treasurer is accountable to the people. He says he would stay connected and that he would communicate back to the people. He could help the legislature with financial forecasts. He would have good fiscal responsibility. He would make sure the office doesn't get bulldozed over. He would put political pressure on the legislature or governor if he had to. He would bring private sector mentality to public office. He would take a stand on tax cuts, bonding issues and judge what's fiscally responsible quickly so that the legislature can be informed right away.

WHY RUNNING?: The current treasurer is not seeking reelection. Mark has worked with Zion's bank and would bring private sector experience. He would come in with a fresh perspective and thinks that it should be run like a private sector office. He could do this.

AFFECTS OF BEING A LEGISLATOR: Mark is currently a 2 term legislator (past 4 years). He says that he has a good relationship with the legislature. He has agreed and disagreed with them and would have no problem telling them "No" if he needs to.

OPPONENT: Richard Ellis currently works in the Treasurer's office. Mark says you will get more status quo with him.

TERM: He doesn't get the Washington mentality that seniority pays. He says he doesn't think that it's good. He said that he is not for term limits, but that 2-3 terms for any legislator should be all they try for. He says you should get in and get out. He said that he would like to be treasurer for 2 terms tops.

Family Study

I thought that this was an interesting study. It was conducted by Georgia State University economist Ben Scafidi and sponsored by the Institute for American Values, the Institute for Marriage and Public Policy, the Georgia Family Council, and the Families Northwest. It found that family fragmentation costs the nation $112 billion a year. The Sutherland Institute says that divorce and unwed childbearing is costing Utah taxpayers $276 million a year.

See Full Study

'Divorce culture' is costing taxpayers, study says
By Elaine Jarvik - Deseret News - published Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Fewer divorces better for Utah coffers
By Joe Pyrah -DAILY HERALD - published Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Controversy # 3

Controversy has struck the Republican party again. The first two were mentioned in previous posts.

1. Fab Five Mailing
2. Delegate Email
3. Delegate Residence

When we were trained to hold the caucus meetings we were told that the people who were there participating had to be a resident of our precinct. They printed out a list of every registered voter in our precinct and when they came we had to look them up and make sure they were there. If they weren't, they were suppose to fill out a voter registration form and if there was any question they were suppose to provide proof of where they lived.

Right now Stan and Becky Lockharts daughter is not currently living in the precinct that she was made a delegate of. She is 17 years old and still in high school, but was made a delegate in a precinct that she plans to move into before the convention.

Articles concerning this:
Delegate pick may violate the rules
by Cathy McKitrick - THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE
Young delegate under microscope
by Joe Pyrah - DAILY HERALD

New article published April 18th - pretty such sums it all up:
What a mess Utah Republican Party has made
by Bob Bernick Jr. - DESERET NEWS

Author Invites

I just wanted you to know that I have also invited members from other precincts to join in on this blog. I really hope that we can get some good information, conversations and I'm ok with even difference of opinions!

Please if you have an issue that you would like for us to discuss with ourselves or a candidate let me know. In fact, you could easily just make a comment on this post about issues that are important to you.

Thanks & Have a Wonderful Day!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Lisa Shepherd - running for State House Rep. 61

I have recently been able to have several in depth conversations with Lisa Shepherd. I think she is a very brave women for sticking her neck out there. She just happens to be a member of my precinct and up until the middle of March was my Legislative Chair (which is the Republican party leader of my district). She took a leave of absence so she could run for office.

INFORMATIVE: Lisa always wants us to be informed. I was the precinct vice chair and was able to fill in for the chair at our caucus meeting. Lisa was very good at keeping me informed through email, letters, and phone calls about training and other such meetings and issues. One thing I've been most impressed by is the fact that she does her homework. She doesn't just make a decision because someone told her to take that stand or because she knows that's how you feel about that issue.

IMMIGRATION: Right now immigration is a huge topic, especially what to do with illegal status students that are receiving in-state tuition. Lisa called Utah State Attorney General, Mark Shurtleff, to ask if repealing the in-state tuition was legal based upon the Supreme Court Case that decided all children were to be educated in public schools without tuition. That court case made her curious as to if it was legal to repeal in-state tuition based upon the Fourteenth Amendment. She found that to deny illegal status students in-state tuition is in violation of the law. She was told that she was the only person who has ever even bothered to ask. She said that it really disappointed her that others would not try to seek or do their homework. She referred me to her website for more information on illegal immigration

VOUCHERS: She voted against vouchers because the bill was a broken bill, it just wasn't right. She says that vouchers is a big topic right now and that it will come up in the legislature again. She has come up with a plan that would allow people a tax deduction for sending their kids to a private school based on your income. This would keep the government intrusion out of the schools and still offer a bit of financial relief.

WHY SHE IS RUNNING: She feels like more needs to be done in our state government. She thinks that someone needs to get in there and fight for the people. She feels like our current representative is not accurately representing the people, but doing what leadership and other legislators want him to do. She feels that one of the ways the people are not being represented is the lack of attendance to meetings by our current representative.

REPRESENTATION: She is willing to be the underdog and stand up for what she believes. She says that she never wants anyone to feel with her that she tells you what you want to hear, but that she is open and honest. She is willing to be the first to tell you what she thinks and then will really listen to your side of the issue. She is always willing to listen to those of us she represents.

Jason Chaffetz - running for U.S. House

I was able to meet with Jason Chaffetz today. Here's what he had to say.

WHY RUNNING? He thinks that the reason so many democrats are getting elected into office is because our republican legislators have fallen from the core conservative values. He says that we need to clean house and elect representatives who make the change to return to core conservative values. These representatives are up for office every 24 months so that the people can look at their leadership to see if they are still being represented. He says it's ok to make a change.

FISCAL DISCIPLINE: He thinks that fiscal discipline is a priority. He believes how you run a campaign reflects how you will represent and vote when in office. He says the candidates should be fiscally conservative. He is doing this by having no paid staff (his staff is all volunteer), he isn't buying a vote through meals (no free meals), and he isn't polling (says he doesn't need a pollster to tell him how to vote). Along these lines he thinks that the president should be able to line item veto. He says that we need to curb the way to change earmarks. He says that he won't vote for a single earmark. He says that our government needs to have a business mindset. We need more transparency. He said that he would not cut the Department of Defense. 28% of federal programs are completely ineffective or don't produce results. See

EDUCATION: He would repeal No Child Left Behind. He would like to completely eliminate the Department of Education. He believes that the federal government should have nothing to do with our states education. He does think there is a role for the federal government in offering low interest student loans and grants, but that can be done through another program or department.

NATIONAL SECURITY: He thinks that we need to have a strong national security. This means that we should have the best equipment and intelligence (not on Americans, but the rest of the world). He says there are unacceptable parts of the Patriot Act that should be changed. He said that we should strengthen and have strong Special & Tactical Forces, but that we are overusing our National Guard. He says that we need to better care for the armed forces members.

ILLEGAL IMMIGRATION: He says that current law is different than current policy. He thinks that they should be the same. We need to strengthen the laws, enforce the laws, and get the policy in line with the laws. He thinks that it is an immoral position to think it's ok to have 2nd class citizens, to say they are good for business. He says we need to first fix "legal" immigration. We need to reject Amnesty. We need to get rid of rewards and incentives. He opposes birthright citizenship. He says we need to give business the tools they need to hire safely. He says the technology is there. He says that business owners aren't immigration officers so they need these tools. Right now the federal prisons are overcrowded, if an illegal immigrant commits a crime they are often let go because the prisons are full. This is the same on a local level. A citizen will commit a crime and go to jail. An illegal immigrant will commit the same crime, they will be processed and let go. We need to fix this. He also says we need to insist on assimilation, English should be the official language. If you want to be a citizen you should learn English. He says not another dime should be spent on translating our government documents into different languages. He says we should lock down the borders. He says that we need a guest worker program that works. He says that less than 10% of visas are issued for agriculture work. 40% of people who are issued visas never leave.

CHRIS CANNON: He said that he has missed 500+ votes. He did not count the ones during the time that his daughter died. He is ranked in the bottom half of congressmen who have missed votes. 1 means you missed the least votes and 435 means you missed the most votes. The past 3 years Chris ranked 404, 395, 396. See or

JON HUNTSMAN: He disagrees with Jon's position on global warming, immigration, and the soccer stadium.

DISTRICT 3: Someone had asked why running in this district when he lives in another. He said that he lives in Alpine. It was only a few years ago that some northern Utah county cities where put in the same district as Park City. When he decided to run there was that possibility that we might get another district. This obviously didn't happen. The constitution says that you must reside in the state that you represent not the boundaries of the district. I believe he is only a few miles from the boundary line. He really thinks that Cannon now needs to be replaced and that is why he has chosen to run against him.

CAMPAIGN MONEY: He set a budget for himself to only spend $100,000 through convention. By law you are required to report any donation over $200, but he has reported all of his donations. His campaign has been donated $90,000.

email Update # 2

I have been very frustrated over the email controversy (see earlier posts). I finally wrote an email to Stan Lockhart. I realize that I am not the only one who emailed, called, and otherwise communicated their frustration over this matter. I guess Friday morning the Salt Lake Tribune published another not so nice article about this matter (I didn't read the complete article, just some excerpts). Later that morning, 9:20 a.m., Stan sent an email saying to call him and left his number. Just under an hour later (10:15 a.m.) I received an email from Maria Uboldi that had an excel attachment of my precincts caucus rolls, emails and all. It was after this time that I checked my email. I called Stan, but I got his voice mail. I left him a message thanking him for the caucus rolls that I had received.

A few hours after that I started to receive emails from the candidates. So I'm not sure what exact declaration was made, but all candidates should have the delegate email lists now and all precinct chairs should have a list of their caucus rolls. Yeah!

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Mark Madsen - running for State Senate 13

I got to listen to Mark Madsen. Here is what he had to say:

OPPONENTS, WHY RUNNING, ETC.: He said that everyone who voted for vouchers has an opponent. He says that there are still things he wants to accomplish. He believes that the Constitution is a divinely inspired document. He says that legislators don’t refer back to their Oath of Office enough. He says he is a Republican of conviction, not a Republican of convenience. He says that he agrees with the Republican platform 100%. He said he was rated the most conservative state senator by the Deseret News. He says that he is not going to be persuaded by 1000 emails if it violates principle.

10th AMENDMENT: He believes that the 10th amendment still matters. That all states retain their sovereignty. He thinks that when the federal government can't mandate the states to do something they will tax us instead and say if we do what they want they will give us a tax break.

TOP 2 ISSUES: He says that education clearly rises to top. 100% of our income tax, both individual and corporate, goes to education. Depending on the year, education is 40-45% of the state budget. Education always needs additional money from the General Fund. He voted for every dollar allocated to education. He says that education of children is important, they are the hope of our future. The more important he feels something is the less he wants government involved. He says they mess things up.

The second issue he says is Transportation. He says we are way behind in our state road projects. He says there is only one year in the history of the state that education didn’t receive additional money and it seems like the reserve fund for education is money for the roads. When the economy dips the roads really suffer.

IMMIGRATION: The federal government has failed in many ways. Securing our borders has been ignored. He thinks we shouldn’t have policies that give incentives for illegals to come to our state. He says that we need to train law enforcement to enforce the laws. He says that those who think that enforcing these laws aren’t compassionate aren’t looking at the flip side of it, where the illegals are doing work for unfair wages and being abused. He said that they passed an immigration bill, but didn’t have the guts to take out the instate tuition. He says the bill doesn’t even take effect until 2010.

PUBLIC EMPLOYEES: He would like to see a policy where public employees could work in the private sector off and on without losing their pensions, "free flow of the best and brightest without risking everything they put in pension, cross pollinating is good..." He’s not universally opposed to privatization. He says privatization is in the future. He thinks we should have toll roads possibly done with private partnerships.

GOVERNMENT ROLES: He says that the government exists to protect the rights of individuals. The federal government should make currency, protect our borders, have a military defense, and protect us from treason and piracy on the high seas.

LAW ENFORCEMENT: Police authority should come from the counties or the state not the federal government. Police powers actually come from the people.

ROADS: He doesn’t think that the government, because they collect the taxes, should be the only ones to build roads. Tax money is bonded or collected by the government. We finance our roads through bonds that are sold to private entities.

PRISONS: He thinks that maximum security prisons should be funded by the government. He thinks that halfway houses could possibly be privatized.

WATER ISSUES: A body was created to help with putting checks and balances where they weren’t before. Private companies build sewer treatments and work with cities He says 60 cities do this in the U.S., but none in Utah. Private companies are watching water rights. States need to aggressively protect water right.

DEMOCRATS: He says that democrats are patient, pragmatic and keep at it.

JOHN HUNTSMAN: He says that he gets along well with him. Jon signed all of his bills that he managed to get passed, but he also signed bills that he voted against. He was very disappointed with Jon’s climate change ideology. He made a unilateral action with any checks and balances. He has been more disappointed with Jon lately. He feels that Jon is not as republican and not as conservative as he is. He thinks that Jon left the platform on certain things and that he left the voucher advocates out to dry.

WHICH CONGRESSIONAL CANDIDATE HE SUPPORTS: He says he supports Chris Cannon. He said there was only one time where he made phone calls on behalf of Cannon's opponent and that he won't be making calls like that this time. For himself he says that there are votes that he wishes he could take back and that Chris' mistakes have been in immigration.

SALT LAKE REAL: He says it's not appropriate for government to spend money to build private venues. He voted against it and also against giving another government entity the money to build venues. He also thinks that if a company is given a tax incentive to come here than the same incentive should be given to companies that are in state.

PROPERTY RIGHTS: He believes in property rights. Sees people’s property rights violated by city and sometimes state governments.

VOUCHERS: He is strongly in favor of vouchers. His kids are home schooled. He said that vouchers will absolutely be revisited this coming year. He said that people who voted against vouchers were ignorant.

REPUBLIC: He wanted to remind us that we live in a republic, not a democracy. He thinks that the 17th Amendment should be repealed.

UTAH vs ARUBA: Aruba is suing the state of Utah in an international court because we won’t allow internet gambling. He thinks that before the U.S. enters into agreements it should go back to the states.

Chris Cannon - running for US House

This morning I got to listen to Chris Cannon. To be fair I was in the back of the room and the music throughout the rest of the restaurant was blaring and I was close to the bar station so sometimes it was hard to hear. He definitely needed a microphone.

Here's what he had to say:

ECONOMIC STIMULUS PACKAGE: The economic stimulus package was a bad idea.

ENERGY BILL: He said that when asked what her greatest accomplishment this past year Nancy Pelosi responded the lower energy costs with the democrats "energy bill." He said he took a leading role in trying to stop them.

STRENGTHENING U.S. DOLLAR: We need to strengthen our dollar. He says we are cheating our children and the creditors with the sliding of our dollar. Our sliding dollar is our single most challenge to our leadership worldwide and energy is the single biggest component of the slide. He says that we have more oil shale (make diesel fuel out of it) than the middle east and there are 6 companies here that have the technology to produce oil for less than $25 a barrel.

HEALTH CARE, MEDICARE & SOCIAL SECURITY: We have exploding medical costs. He says that government programs don't work for 3 reasons. 1) Bureaucrats are involved. 2) Whenever bureaucrats are given money to distribute there is almost always corruption. 3) All democrats think that our welfare system is good. He says that the government is going to stifle innovation and that we can't let the government mandate socialized medicine.

INTERNET: He says that our internet policies should never be a decision by the federal courts. He introduced bill that limits the federal government. Utah state has the right to deem content on the internet as illegal and the federal government doesn't have the right to say it's protected by the 1st amendment (in reference to pornography). He also wants to criminalize the misuse of trademarks for websites. See

WHY RUNNING?: He's a conservative. He wants to stay in as long as his influence is rising.

IMMIGRATION: He says we need to allow the use of border troops. We can't have a country without borders. In 1986 the government stooped requiring people here on visas to report where they were living. He feels this was a mistake. Many people crossing the borders are funding the trip by doing something criminal. He said right now there is a Civil War in Mexico that is not being publicized because of the people fleeing the country. He says that illegals are coming here and doing more illegal things like purchasing false documentation of all kinds, such as ids and car registrations. He says that he never endorsed John McCain's bills on immigration. He says it's a $4.3 trillion issue.

NO CHILD LEFT BEHIND: He said he didn't support it, but then President Bush asked him to really look at it. He said that the legislation for it was good, but even the best ideas in government don't work well. He says that in Utah it has not worked well on every level. We should get rid of it. See (I haven't been able to get on this site all week).

MINORS: There is a law in Utah that protects minors from having to see material that is deemed inappropriate (I didn't catch the official name of it). One of the delegates asked what Chris could do to enfore this law in referencing some magazine covers. He said that it's a state law not a federal law and that it should be dwelt with locally. If we are having a problem with it we should contact our city, county or state attorney.

MORTAGE MARKET: He says that the vast majority of wealth is in homes. He says that the worst thing for it would be the passing of the bankruptcy bill that would allow changes in the mortage loan amounts. Allowing the government to reduce the morgage amounts and percentages.

GOVERNMENT SPENDING: He says the government needs to spend less and extend tax cuts. We need 45-50 conservative republicans in office who will vote for less spending. If we are going to grow the war we need to cut domestic spending. He thinks that John McCain will work with congress.

TAXES: He says that if we cut down on government spending that will take care of the consumption tax. The Fair Tax would be higher than stated because you would still have to add in local and state taxes.

LEGISLATION: He would like to have the government become more transparent. He would like the bills to be posted online so that the American people can have free access to them to read them and scrutinize what is in them. Chris said there are only 2 other congressman who have introduced and passed more legislation than he has.

ENGAGED: He says that people are really hungry to be engaged.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Keith Grover Roll Call

I’m not going to pretend to know all that a State House Representative does. I do know that each are assigned/appointed to be on committees. As far as I understand this is part of their “service” when they are elected. For the house these meetings are once a month during the months of April, May, June, July, September, October, and November.

Right now I’m having a hard time understanding how my representative could possibly be representing me when he doesn’t even go to these meetings. Keith Grover is my rep. He has been appointed to the Judiciary Interim Committee and the Government Operations Interim Committee. Out of a total of 14 meetings last year (2007) he went to 5 meetings (you can look for yourself on the Utah State Legislature site, look at the minutes for the separate Interim Committees). He couldn’t even make it to half the meetings.

Here’s his roll call:
April 18, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - ABSENT
April 18, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – ABSENT

May 16, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - Present
May 16, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – Present

June 20, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - Present
June 20, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – Present

July 18, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - Present
July 18, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – ABSENT

September 19, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - ABSENT
September 19, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – ABSENT

October 17, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - ABSENT
October 17, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – ABSENT

November 14, 2007 – Government Operations – 9:a.m. - ABSENT
November 14, 2007 – Judiciary Interim – 2:p.m. – ABSENT

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Candidate Campaign Sites

County Delegate Elections -

State House Rep. 61:
Keith Grover
Lisa M. Shepherd

County Commissioner:
Larry Ellertson
Jeff P. Wabel - dropped out

State Delegate Elections -

U.S. House Rep. District 3:
Chris Cannon
Jason Chaffetz
Joe Ferguson
Stone Fonua
David O. Leavitt

Jon M. Huntsman, Jr.
Charles "Chuck" Smith

Lieutenant Governor:
Gary R. Herbert

Attorney General:
Mark L. Shurtleff

State Treasurer:
Richard K. Ellis
Mark Walker

State Auditor:
Auston G. Johnson III

State Senator District 13:
J. Lane Henderson
Mark Benson Madsen

email Update

Last I heard they were going to give all the candidates the delegates email addresses. It's funny that it was only days after the caucus meeting, March 29th to be exact, that I received an email from Chris Cannon congratulating me on becoming a state delegate. Obviously he was given access to the delegates email addresses, because I've never received an email from him before.

Now this is the beginning of an email that I received today from the Utah Republican Party:

IMPORTANT NOTE: The Utah Republican Party has chosen not to share State Delegate e-mails with candidates. To facilitate communication between candidates and delegates, please see the message(s) below from candidate(s) seeking the Republican Party Nomination. All candidates who will have contested races at the State Convention on May 10, 2008 have been invited to send messages via the Utah Republican Party to State Delegates. Weekly e-mails will be sent every Tuesday from the Utah Republican Party with submissions from participating candidates. This e-mail contains the opinions of candidates and are not necessarily the opinion of the Utah Republican Party. Each message was written by the candidate and should be attributed as such. Please contact the candidate directly with questions.

Might I also add that from reporter interviews with County Party Chair Marian Monnahan, she stated that she told delegates that she wouldn't give out their email addresses to the candidates. We were all newly elected, yes, I realize that some people may have been reelected, but I have never spoken to this women or received any correspondance regarding the parties use of my email address, which would of had to happen after March 25th.


You may have heard about the recent republican party controversies. I thought I'd list them here so that you don't think we've been ignoring them!

  1. Fab Five
  2. Delegate Email

1) Several days after the Caucus Meetings (around March 27th & 28th) past delegates started receiving invitations to an event to be held at Thanksgiving Point on April 10th. It was titled: Announcing the Return of the Fabulous Five. It was sent out from the Utah State Republican Party supporting 5 of the legislative incumbents. This is in violation of the party's bylaws 7.2. They are not suppose to show public support to any candidate that is being opposed by another Republican. Below I have listed the bylaws and articles published regarding this matter.

Party Officer Neutrality clause from the Bylaws:

A. State Party officers, National Committee members, and paid staff shall assist and provide, without discrimination or restriction, equal access to Party information and services within their responsibility to all Republican candidates.

B. State Party Officers, National Committee members, and paid staff shall not publicly endorse or oppose any Republican candidate for partisan public office in Utah while the candidate is opposed by another Republican candidate for the same office.

Deseret Morning News:
GOP flier raising a ruckus
Candidates accuse party of wrongly backing incumbents
By Leigh Dethman
Published: Saturday, March 29, 2008 12:41 a.m. MDT

Utah County Republican legislative candidates are fuming after the state party sent out a mailer that seems to endorse the Republican incumbents they are challenging.

The flier advertises an April 10 fundraiser for Rep. Ken Sumsion, R-American Fork, Rep. Keith Grover, R-Provo, Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman, Rep. Chris Herrod, R-Provo, and Rep. Stephen Sandstrom, R-Orem. It includes a line that says, "Paid for by the Utah Republican Party," and the party's postal rate number.

Challengers fear that delegates will feel pressure to cast their vote for the incumbents, since the mailer was paid for by the party.

"They are just telling you who they want you to vote for," said Jared Sepulveda, who is running against Sumsion in District 56. "If they want to do this after the primaries are done, that's fine. But not now."

State party bylaws do not allow party officers, national committee members and paid staff to publicly endorse or oppose any Republican candidate over another in a convention or primary election.

But state GOP Chairman Stan Lockhart said "it doesn't amount to an endorsement at all."
To make things right, Lockhart said he's offered the challengers the chance to send out a mailer paid for by the party as well.

"The party works very hard to treat all Republican candidates the same," Lockhart said. "We take that very seriously."

Lisa Shepherd, who is running against Grover in District 61, said the mailer is a "direct violation of Republican rules."

"It completely looks like an official document of the party," Shepherd said. "It's against the bylaws to take a stand or play favorites or anything until you've come out of the primary."
Lockhart said the whole mess is a case of bad timing.

He said the freshman legislators came to him during the session and asked for help. However, party workers were so busy with caucus preparations that the mailing was delayed.

Lockhart said he never intended to have the mailer go out this late. It was supposed to go out before the March 17 candidate filing deadline. & Deseret Morning News
Challengers upset over Republican fliers
March 31st, 2008 @ 3:34pm
Tom Callan reporting

Utah County Republican challengers blast the state party for sending out a flier listing the names only of incumbents.

A flier sent out for the April 10 fundraiser at Thanksgiving Point says, "Announcing the return of the Fabulous Five." It lists Rep. Ken Sumsion, R-American Fork, Rep. Keith Grover, R-Provo, Rep. Carl Wimmer, R-Herriman, Rep. Chris Herrod,R-Provo, and Rep. Stephen Sandstrom, R-Orem. The GOP challengers are not mentioned.

Lisa Shepherd is challenging incumbent Keith Grover in Provo. "I've gotten some communication from people who would ask me not to be a part of this and to not talk about it. I've also gotten a lot of people who said you have to stand up," Shepherd says.

She says the state party should not take sides before the primary. "My understanding is that it came from the party in trying to get this out in time before there are any challengers."

Jared Sepulveda, who is running against Sumsion in District 56, said voters who look at the mailers could be influenced to vote for the candidates who are mentioned on the ad. "They are just telling you who they want you to vote for," Sepulveda said. "If they want to do this after the primaries are done, that's fine. But not now."

KSL Newsradio left several messages for state party chairman Stan Lockhart, but he did not return the calls.

Lockhart told the Deseret Morning News yesterday the party is offering the challengers a chance to send out another mailer, which the party will pay for as well.

Lockhart said the mailer was supposed to go out before the March 17 candidate filing deadline, but by the time it was sent out, challengers were already on the ballot.

Salt Lake Tribune Article:
GOP out to rescue its superheroes
By Paul Rolly Tribune Columnist
Article Last Updated: 04/04/2008 03:45:31 AM MDT

With so many Republican incumbents in the Utah Legislature facing challenges from within their own party this year (can you say vouchers?), the attempts by the party establishment to save their own are getting a little silly.

Take the flier recently sent out by the Utah Republican Party announcing a fundraiser for five one-term GOP representatives, referred to as "The Fabulous Five."

The flier features a crude graphic of the five "fab" guys standing together in poses reminiscent of the TV series "the A-Team," although I'm not sure which one is supposed to be Mr. T.

And get this script:
"In 2007, the Utah Legislature welcomed five incredibly ingenious men to the House. Standing tall with strong conservative principles, these legislators set new standards and paved new paths toward defending and preserving freedom, liberty and justice for all."
Whoever wrote the script forgot to add "truth" and "the American Way." And why aren't they wearing capes?

In reality the five freshmen legislators - Reps. Ken Sumsion of American Fork, Keith Grover of Provo, Chris Herrod of Provo, Steve Sandstrom of Orem and Carl Wimmer of Herriman - had no stand-out legislation, but they were good at doing whatever legislative leadership told them to do.

(More powerful than a locomotive.)

Four of the five - Sumsion, Grover, Herrod and Sandstrom - are being challenged by members of their own party. Wimmer is being challenged by Dave Hogue, a former 10-year legislator who gave up his seat two years ago to run for the Senate and now is trying to reclaim it as a Democrat. The flier, as a result, has caused some flak in the GOP since party by-laws forbid party officers from taking sides in intra-party Republican races.

(Faster than a speeding bullet.)

All five dutifully followed leadership's admonition to vote for vouchers, even though Sandstrom and Grover appeared to be against vouchers until they caved to pressure from their peers.

(We'll make them an offer they can't refuse.)

The "Fabulous Five" theme in the flier seems eerily similar to gimmicks used in the past by leaders of the Utah County Republican Party.

There was the "Magnificent Seven" running for the county party's Central Committee with the flier featuring Sen. Curt Bramble, his wife and county party secretary Susan Bramble, Rep. Becky Lockhart and her husband and State Republican Party Chairman Stan Lockhart, among others.

(Able to leap tall buildings in a single bound.)

And of course there was the Central Committee slate calling itself the "Reagan 17."

(Bombing begins in five minutes.)

The keynote speaker at the "Fab Five's" fundraiser, by the way, is radio talk-show host Bob Lonsberry.

(Mighty Mouse to the rescue.)

2) There has been a big todo about delegate email addresses. When I was trained to run the caucus meeting I was asked to get email addresses from caucus attendees, but more importantly I was suppose to be sure and get them for elected delegates. There was a separate paper that needed to be filled in for the delegates. I was never specifically told what they were going to use the email addresses for, but I figure if I'm going to give it out, it just might be used! I also feel if you are going to be a representative, a voice, for your neighbors then you should provide means that they can contact you and I feel like an email address is just as important as a phone number. You can read email at your own convinence and they can be written at your own convinence. This goes for the candidates that are running also. They should be able to contact you. That is what being a delegate is about. You can set up any number of free email addresses. If you don't want people bothering you, you should have one email address that you give out for things like this and one for your personal contacts.

Articles about this:

Deseret Morning News
Infighting by county GOP likely not over
By Tad Walch
Published: Saturday, April 5, 2008 12:37 a.m. MDT

Amid swirling criticism and media scrutiny Friday, the Utah County Republican Party reversed course and agreed to give all candidates the e-mail addresses of delegates to the county convention.

It was a bitter pill for the party chair and pleasantly stunned a group of Republicans who are challenging legislative incumbents from their own party. Those challengers had been complaining all week that state and county party leaders were violating rules by aiding the incumbents.

Complaints that the party machine was steamrolling challengers included allegations that state Senate Major Leader Curt Bramble's wife, who is the Utah County GOP secretary, would use inside information to favor him in his re-election bid against James O'Neal and Jackie Degaston.
Degaston said there was an inherent conflict of interest in entrusting the e-mail lists to Susie Bramble.

Sen. Bramble bristled at the suggestion Friday afternoon when I interviewed him. About an hour later, party chairwoman Marian Monnahan called me and said county leadership had changed its mind and would give the e-mail lists to all the candidates.

The flap began Wednesday night when the party met with all the Republican candidates to explain rules and plan the order of speakers at the convention later this month.

Degaston stood up and complained that some candidates had been given the e-mail addresses of the delegates who control the destiny of campaigns at the convention.

The delegates were selected last week at hundreds of neighborhood caucuses throughout Utah Valley. For about a month, those delegates control Utah's political process. Candidates woo the delegates, who then vote at the party conventions.

If a candidate earns 60 percent of the vote in a convention race, he or she becomes the party's nominee. If the vote is tighter, the top two finalists advance to a primary in June.

Monnahan had promised delegates she would keep their e-mail addresses private. At the caucus meetings, leaders declared the e-mail lists would be used only for internal party business.

That was a new policy. The party had provided delegate e-mail addresses to candidates in the past. Two longtime legislative district chairmen forgot the new rule when they got the delegate e-mail lists and handed them over to the Republican candidates in their district.

So in House District 57, incumbent Rep. Craig Frank and challengers Kim Robinson and Jennifer Baptista got the e-mail lists. The same was true for District 60, where incumbent Rep. Brad Daw is being challenged by Linda Housekeeper.

Degaston and others complained that not giving out e-mails handicapped candidates with smaller campaign treasure chests. That's a major issue for Degaston's challenge of Bramble in the senate race.

Party leadership initially argued that because all candidates in a race either had the e-mail lists or didn't, the playing field was level, but Monnahan finally decided that to be completely fair, the lists would be distributed to everyone.

"It does bother me because I gave my word to delegates," she said. "This kills me. When I say I will or won't do something, I keep to my word. I'm really having to go through some trauma here to do this."

The e-mail flap followed closely on the heels of a mailer sent by the state party that called five thus-far average freshmen legislators the Fabulous Five, four of whom are facing challenges from fellow Republicans. The mailer appeared to break state party rules against endorsing one Republican over another.

State chair Stan Lockhart said the mailer was supposed to be sent before other candidates filed and before the neighborhood caucuses. It mistakenly was sent late.

With more challenges to incumbents than are normal within the party, such infighting over the process of selecting Republican nominees probably isn't over. After all, the county convention is still exactly three weeks away.

Daily Herald:
GOP delegate e-mails released to all candidates after mix-up
by Joe Pyrah
April 5, 2008

After much ado about e-mails, county Republican Party officials have decided to release the electronic addresses of their delegates. About 1,200 delegates were recently chosen at GOP caucuses across the county. Their names, phone numbers and addresses were given to respective candidates, but their e-mails were withheld for party use only on the basis of privacy and spamming concerns.

"I realize it's partly inner-party politics and that's what I'm running against," said Jacqueline de Gaston, in an interview earlier this week. "It's just a crummy rule they shouldn't have voted for." But a handful of candidates mistakenly got e-mail addresses through their legislative chairmen and that forced the party's hand, said party chairwoman Marian Monnahan.

"It's a matter of fairness now," Monnahan said.

Such a seemingly small matter is a big deal for candidates, especially those running on a shoestring budget. For example, de Gaston said reaching all of her 199 delegates would take days by phone and cost $75 just in postage for a mailer that may be out of date by the time it reaches its target.

"You can see how campaign things change rapidly. [E-mail] is quick and easy and cheap," said de Gaston, who is facing incumbent Curt Bramble in Senate District 16.

Delegates are important because they help choose candidates for the primary or general elections. If the convention chooses a candidate by more than 60 percent, that person skips the primary and goes straight to the general election. In the case of the Republican Party, which hasn't lost a race in years, coming out of a convention without a primary challenger has meant easily winning the whole thing in November.

Candidates for state legislative seats will have access to the e-mail lists but will have to first promise to use them only for campaigning.

"They may not be used for commercial or other purposes," Monnahan said.

Monday, April 7, 2008

County Commissioner

Article from the Daily Herald

Saturday, 05 April 2008
Commissioner Ellertson in one man race

The only county position up for grabs this year is now a one-man race. Commissioner Larry Ellertson no longer has a Republican challenger now that Jeff Wabel has dropped out, and no other parties have put forth candidates. "I'm worried as a citizen, as an employee -- especially as law enforcement -- in the way things are going," said Wabel, a sheriff's detective. But he's also dealing with a sick family member and other issues that would pull him away from a campaign. "The fight is really not the foremost of importance right now for me," he said. He also was assuaged somewhat after a talk with Ellertson. Instead he plans to focus his political energies against Commissioner Steve White in two years. White, he said, has indeed kept taxes down, but it's now to a point where a lack of funding is hurting the residents of the county. For his part, Ellertson said he plans to participate in the election process as much as he can, though without competition his approach will change. "I'll probably rethink my strategy," he quipped.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Keith Grover - running for State House Rep. 61

On Friday, March 28th, I received a call from Keith Grover. He was on his cellphone and it was cutting out. I tried to ask him to repeat something, but he must of misunderstood me or I him. He then says, "So Lisa's your girl. What can I say to make you change your mind?"

This was my first official phone call with any of the candidates and he told me absolutely nothing about what he thought about anything. All he wanted to know is what exactly he could say to make me vote for him.

Maybe this is normal, but I felt like I was being accused and drilled. I'm sure that he is a nice guy, maybe just having a very bad day.