Thursday, August 29, 2013

Count My Vote vs Fair Elections in Utah who is funding the Buy My Vote group

Major Count My Vote funding so far released. 

Alliance for Good Government

8/20/2013 Gail Miller   $100,000.00

12/17/2013 James Swartz $25,000.00
12/6/2013 Leslie and Alan Layton $25,000.00
11/22/2013 Ian M. Cumming $25,000.00
11/4/2013 Thomas and Kristin Stockham $25,000.00
10/18/2013 Prime Holdings Insurance Services, Inc. $25,000.00
9/3/2013 Mike Leavitt  $25,000.00
9/3/2013 Rich McKeown $25,000.00
8/26/2013 Garff Enterprises, Inc. $25,000.00
8/26/2013 H. Roger Boyer $25,000.00
8/26/2013 Maccall Management, LLC $25,000.00
8/26/2013 Merit Medical $25,000.00
8/23/2013 Dell Loy Hansen $25,000.00
8/23/2013 Donald and Susan P. Lewon $25,000.00
8/23/2013 John Price $25,000.00
8/22/2013 Kem C. and Carolyn Barnes Gardner $25,000.00
8/20/2013 H. Brent Beesley $25,000.00
8/7/2013 Mark Miller $25,000.00
7/18/2013 Dinesh Patel $25,000.00
7/18/2013 Gary Crocker $25,000.00

9/13/2013 Sandy Chamber of Commerce $24,000.00

12/28/2013 L E Simmons $20,000.00

10/9/2013 Khosrow B. Semnani $15,000.00

8/13/2013 Burton L. and Elaine L. Gordon $12,500.00

12/31/2013 John Miller $10,000.00
12/30/2013 David E. Simmons $10,000.00
12/26/2013 Dan England $10,000.00
12/11/2013 Anne Osborn $10,000.00
8/27/2013 JLS Holdings, LLC $10,000.00
8/12/2013 ThomasArts Holding, Inc. $10,000.00
7/11/2013 Bruce Bastian $10,000.00
7/10/2013 Omar Kader $10,000.00
5/7/2012 Khosrow B. Semnani $10,000.00
4/24/2012 William Nelson Shiebler $10,000.00
4/20/2012 Dell Loy Hansen $10,000.00
4/16/2012 Lunt Capital Management, Inc. $10,000.00

12/13/2013 Gail Miller $9,000.00
11/13/2013 Gail Miller $9,000.00

12/31/2013 Scott Keller $5,000.00
12/20/2013 R. Anthony Sweet $5,000.00
12/4/2013 Thomas Guinney $5,000.00
11/22/2013 Kristen M Fletcher $5,000.00
11/6/2013 Victor and Linda Lund $5,000.00
11/4/2013 E R Dumke, Jr. $5,000.00
10/16/2013 Ezekiel Dumke $5,000.00
9/30/2013 Edward McCartney $5,000.00

11/4/2013 Lonnie M. Bullard $3,000.00

12/31/2013 Clark and Jennifer Whitworth $2,500.00
12/31/2013 Don Stirling $2,500.00
12/30/2013 James Olson $2,500.00

The caucus & convention system in Utah is the best way to make sure a grassroots process can win over large amounts of money. It is the only way someone with $100,000 can go against someone with $2 million in election funds.

Our problem with voter turnout is it has not kept up with the population increase. The voter turnout keeps going up but not as fast as the population. Some of that is the younger voters, where Utah has a larger percentage of them and they aren't, as a group, as involved. Also those moving in and not understanding our system.

If you change the way our Utah primary's work, you could have two republicans in the general election ballot (or two democrats).

We have a system that that does NOT favor the incumbent, wealthy or famous. This is a good thing. Keep Fair Elections in Utah. Keep the neighborhood caucus election system.  

I am glad Gail Miller is keeping involved. Helping children with reading.

It is sad she bought into the Count My Vote / Buy My Vote arguments however. Didn't Chris Cannon have endorsements from Pres. Bush, Mitt Romney and both of the then current US Senators at the time? Jason Chaffetz still won.

re: Sen. Bennett in 2010. He was not in the top 2 coming out of convention. In fact the more moderate Tim Bridgewater was selected by 57% of the delegates in the last round. Mike Lee managed to get 43% and make it to a primary. Sen. Bennett endorsed Tim Bridgewater during the primary, but with voters ticked at TARP and ObamaCare, they went with Mike Lee.

You like or don't like Sen. Mike Lee? Well 57% of the delegates didn't pick him to be the nominee. It was during the primary he was selected to be the GOP nominee.

Limiting? There were over 120,000 voters that participated in the 2012 Neighborhood Caucus election and meeting. The democratic caucus also had record turnout. People want a say on who shows up on the ballot.

The open primary is working so well in 2013 where 15% was considered good? You can't blame that on the caucus system. The one time Utah got rid of the caucus system our turnout went to 10% for a primary that included the US Senate. It was even that low in Salt Lake County. See August of 1946.

For more information see:

Monday, August 26, 2013

Drug use help for Needy Families Recipients

Utah has spent more than $30,000 to screen welfare applicants for drug use since a new law went into effect a year ago, but only 12 people have tested positive, state figures show.

The data from August 2012 through July 2013 indicates the state spent almost $6,000 to give 4,730 applicants a written test. After 466 showed a likelihood of drug use, they were given drug tests at a total cost of more than $25,000, according to the Utah Department of Workforce Services, which administers welfare benefits and the tests.

24 percent of applicants who were required to take a drug test didn't and did not continue in the application process.

Who takes the written test?

H.B. 155 Drug Screening for Temporary Assistance for Needy Families Recipients

This bill modifies the Employment Support Act by requiring an applicant who otherwise qualifies for cash assistance under Utah's Family Employment Program to complete a written drug screening questionnaire and meet other requirements in order to receive cash assistance under the program.

If we helped 12 people get off drugs and not end up in our prison system and helped them get off assistance, that would be worth the $30,000. It sounds more like we had over 100 who would have been getting cash that had a drug problem that decided they didn't want the help. How much did that save taxpayers?

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Sim Gill v Chad Bennion

I don't know Sim Gill, but I spent a few years working with his dad. His father is a good man. I know many of the leaders of the Sikh temple in Utah.

I think Chad Bennion is badly referring to what Sim himself has said, but not doing a great job of doing it, or the press is not connecting the dots.

(from that account)
Gill, 52, spoke in a faint Indian accent of a formative moment from his youth, to a classroom of 13 students recently at the University of Utah. At the age of “eight or nine” in his native India, Gill said, he witnessed the brutal beating of a man accused of stealing jewelry from a neighbor’s home, and in the end, the beating of an innocent man.

“That left a very strong impression on me,” Gill said, “that when you have that authority, when you have that power, when you have that capacity to alter and impact people’s lives, you have to really use that with a great level of deference and responsibility.”

I believe Utah has seen a large problem from Ogden to other places in the state of an abuse of power by a few members of the police, based on the 4th amendment and state law. I have no problem with Sim Gill calling them on it. 


Lisa Riley Roche, Deseret News/KSL

I felt like you were clear on Chad. Thanks.

What isn't as clear on the quote you have from me is that I didn't think that Chad was being racist, but others have believed that.

If you have time, perhaps you could add a couple of clarifying words.

"by others"

Fred Cox, a member of the state party's central committee, said Bennion's comments have been interpreted [by others] as "trying to use Sim's ethic background as one of the reasons he is a 'cop hater.'"

While Cox, a former West Valley City lawmaker, said there needs to be a discussion about whether Gill is trying to protect against a police state by leaning "too far in the other direction," Bennion's comments may be hurting the party.

"He's coming across as being angry," Cox said. "Instead of remaining on the attack, in my mind what he should have done is make sure people understood what his intent was."

Cox and other Salt Lake County Republicans said party members may discuss Bennion at next month's county central committee meeting, but it's not clear there's support for taking action against him.

Thanks again,

Fred C. Cox

The reporter did a good job of clarifying that Chad Bennion was quoting Sim Gill re: an experience sim had as a 8 or 9 year old. I am less impressed with some of the quotes by others. Especially mine. I was very clear that I felt Bennion was not trying to pull in ethnic race but some were interpreting it or reporting that way. We do need to focus on if Sim Gill is pushing the pendulum too far. It is also obvious that we do need some balance. Sim Gill should provide some balance. We don't need a police state.

Update 3:
I don't believe Sim's experience when his was 8 or 9 is a liability for his current office, nor do I believe he is a cop hater. I do wonder if all the over 100 West Valley City cases should have been tossed the way they were or if more could have been saved. If you have someone breaking into neighborhoods and they are caught, and then let them off the hook, it is a pretty big deal.

Update 4:
As a member of the Utah House of Representatives for the years 2011 and 2012, I voted to remove DUI check points as a 4th amendment violation, voted to fix the problem with police arresting the legal carry of guns under disturbing the peace, and helped stop AG Mark Shurtleff's "clean up bill" 3 times in the House Judicial Standing Committee (it was voted on twice and the 3rd idea didn't get enough support to be put on the agenda) that would have allowed police arresting someone without a warrant with only probable cause for class B and C misdemeanors. (what I felt was further amending our 4th amendment US Constitutional rights) 

I have tried to listen to and be fair to both sides.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Swallow in 200 words

I worked on a project for a year with John Swallow, Chief Deputy AG. I ignored the mud slinging during the primary. I knew both side's political consultants well enough to assume that they were behind it. I should have listened as I was blindsided Jan. 12th this year.

John's biggest critics since becoming AG on several issues are from Republicans. I was looking online for his conflict disclosure forms on Jan. 12th of this year. Not only his March 15th one, (I didn't find out about the March 9th until later) but also the one he had just signed Jan. 10th. I was more concerned with them and the lack of information re: P Solutions than the comments I heard on the tape from Johnson.

When two witnesses (one to get the money and one to pay it) and a tape accused Shurtleff of a $2M deal that involved Jenson, my focus moved to that. Jenson claimed Swallow knew about the $2M deal (Swallow says no). The $1M asset Swallow was to get looks bad.

Investigate. If he knew about the $2M, based on what Swallow hasn't done this year, (Shurtleff in Jail) Impeach. Malfeasance in Office.