2018 Media Coverage

The Hinckley Institute of Politics hosts many notable public officials and political experts every year. Follow the links below for media coverage of Hinckley Forums and other Hinckley Institute events.

To schedule a media interview with Hinckley Institute director Jason Perry, please contact Natalie Tippets at 801-581-8514 or natalie.tippets@utah.edu.


May 17, 2018: Outgoing UTA board members happy name not changing ( Deseret News Utah) " 'This whole discussion got to a position where they just needed to make a decision,' said Jason Perry, head of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics. 'It was starting to take a toll not just on the organization, but on elected officials.' He said lawmakers 'were being forced to constantly explain, justify and defend this decision. The one thing they did not want to spend all their time talking about was the name.' Now, Perry said, UTA can focus on fixes the public wants to see. Legislative audits have been critical of executive compensation and other issues, including transit development dealings. " 

May 16, 2018: Campus-Community Dialogue: #MeToo – Now What? ( KCPW) " The Hinckley Institute of Politics recently hosted their final Spring Campus-Community panel discussion. The panel takes a look at the #MeToo movement — and, in particular, what the future holds for the movement. "

May 14, 2018: Political clashes heat up as big issues head for Utah ballot (HJ News) " The spats come as groups turn to voters after years of trying to convince conservative lawmakers to see things their way. The issues poised to make the ballot generally have strong support in voter polls, said Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Institute at the University of Utah. 'Utahns on a couple of these key issues are wanting to take bigger steps than the Legislature has made and they feel like they have the power to do it,' he said. " 

May 2, 2018: United Utah Party eyes its prospects for November (Cedar City News) " Historically, third parties do not have a long tradition of success in Utah, said Jason Perry, the director of the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics. 'But Utahns are willing to consider a third-party candidate when the other options are unacceptable,' Perry said. 'You only have to look to our last presidential election to see that.' " 

April 27, 2018: Utah Democratic Party puts a friendly wager on the line for its convention (Good4Utah) " Democratic delegates will vote on races in all four congressional districts, and the U.S. Senate. As far as the party's chances in November are concerned, Jason Perry, the director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics says to keep an eye on the 4th Congressional District. Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams is seeking the democratic nomination for that seat. " 

April 23, 2018: Mitt Romney's Second-Place Showing Among Utah Republican Delegates Unlikely to Hurt His Senate Chances (Political News) " Federal filings show Romney, in his latest report, has $1.15 million on hand in his campaign kitty. Kennedy showed $257,000 in his account. (Romney poured $1 million from his failed presidential bid into the Utah Senate race.) 'Mitt Romney is an exceptionally popular candidate in the state; he has high name recognition; he has lots of money; and that is in contrast to his opponent, who has none of those things,' said Jason Perry, the director of the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics. "

April 20, 2018: Romney's reception at GOP convention likely a 'mixed bag' (KSL) " Romney's reception at the convention will be a "mixed bag," said Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. 'This is going to be a sign for all of us who watch whether or not the fracture within the Republican Party is going to mend anytime soon,' he said. Perry said delegates who oppose signature gathering and those who don't know if Romney is conservative enough for them might have some things to say. Those voices in the past pushed popular Gov. Gary Herbert into a primary two years ago against a more conservative candidate, Jonathan Johnson. " 

April 16, 2018: As deadline arrives, 4 initiative campaigns say they have enough signatures to get on ballot (Deseret News Utah) " 'We have not had this number of initiatives come forward from the public in recent memory. So it's impressive that several of these initiatives had so much public support, particularly since each one of them had to stand on its own,' said Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. ' There was a concern for several of these that if we had so many initiatives, some will just get lost. ... But a couple of these initiatives really caught the public's attention just because of the subject matter.' But Perry also cautioned against too readily assuming that each of the initiative campaigns declaring victory Monday will ultimately have cleared the necessary signature thresholds in at least 26 of the 29 state senate districts, as required. " 

April 12, 2018: Col. Wilkerson criticizes U.S. foreign policy in U of U forum (Good4Utah) " Col. Lawrence Wilkerson (Ret.) was the main speaker at a forum hosted by the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. During the talk he criticized U.S. foreign policy on Iran and Syria but said domestic issues could also make us less safe. " 

April 10, 2018: Mitt Romney's Senate campaign war chest includes $1M from his presidential bids (KSL) " Romney is the only GOP candidate so far who has turned in signatures to secure a spot on the June primary ballot, but will also compete for the support of delegates at the party's state convention. Jason Perry, head of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics, said Romney's war chest proves he's a formidable contender. 'We knew that Mitt was popular in the state,' Perry said. 'For any challengers, they're going to look at that ability to fundraise and they will realize that he is a real candidate, and that he is going to be exceptionally hard to beat.' " 

April 3, 2018: Lt. Gov. talks opioid overdose prevention, medical marijuana in U. panel discussion (KSL) " A handful of the state's foremost leaders in the fight against opioid addiction met Tuesday at the University of Utah for a panel discussion focusing on how to overcome that scourge in Utah. The discussion, held at the U.'s Hinckley Institute of Politics, was moderated by Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox, who told reporters afterward that opioid addiction has 'become a public health crisis, a policy crisis, a political crisis.' " 

March 27, 2018: Romney’s Comments On DACA Still To The Right Of Most Utahns ( KUER) " A January poll from the Salt Lake Tribune and Hinckley Institute of Politics showed that 69 percent of Utah voters support allowing DACA recipients to stay in the U.S. 'It would seem to me that he’s on much firmer ground when he talks about fiscal conservatism and budgetary issues than on issues of immigration,' said Karpowitz.

March 13, 2018: U.S. Senate candidate Larry Meyers: It’s not just Romney running for Hatch's seat (The Spectrum) " It could be tough to beat Romney, based on initial polling data on the race. One poll, released in January by The Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics, showed 85 percent of state Republicans supporting Romney, along with 55 percent of independents. "

March 10, 2018: Flexing their muscles, Utah lawmakers expand the power of the Legislature (Deseret News Utah) " Jason Perry, director of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics, said there were several bills during the session that gave the Legislature more control over areas they thought weren't being managed well. 'They're trying to bring their influence to bear on these particular areas. We'll see if this is a trend that continues or not,' he said. " 

March 5, 2018: As the number of female interns in the state Legislature grows, lawmakers and coordinators work to ensure they’re not sexually harassed (Salt Lake Tribune) " 'As it’s been reported in the media, that has certainly been an issue in Utah, and we are working closely with legislators and with legislative research to make sure that whisper network is not a part of this environment anymore,' said Morgan Lyon Cotti, associate director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. "

February 26, 2018: Utah GOP passes bylaw preventing signature gathering (Fox13) " Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics Jason Perry says this move is all about power. 'They want to keep their stranglehold on the nomination process they've had for a long time. That's what this is about. They're losing their control of the party nomination process,' said Perry. "

February 22, 2018: Mia Love holds narrow lead over Ben McAdams in hypothetical match-up (2KUTV) " A similar poll conducted by the Salt Lake Tribune-Hinckley Institute of Politics shows Love holding a five percent lead over McAdams. Since the 2016 election Love has fallen from 53.8 percent to 49 percent, Utah Policy states in a report. " 

Febraury 16, 2018: What we know about Romney's campaign Platform (Good4Utah) " Jason Perry is the Director for the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics. He said, 'I expect that this is going to be a Utah-centric campaign, that's what you can pick up from his announcement this morning,' "

February 16, 2018: Mitt Romney Finally Announces Utah Senate Campaign (Slate) " Romney won every single county in Utah in 2012, and a poll by the Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics projected him to win 64 percent of the vote over Democratic Salt Lake City councilwoman Jenny Wilson. "

February 11, 2018:  POLITICAL STRATEGIST KARL ROVE SAYS NASTY POLITICS NOT NEW (Political News) " Karl Rove, known as the “architect” of President George W. Bush’s presidential campaigns, shared one central message here Thursday: 'don’t despair.' Rove, who served as senior adviser and deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush, spoke at the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah, where he said he began his political career. 'They were some of the most exciting and pleasant times I had, and when I left here I was on fire,' Rove said, referring to his time spent at the University of Utah as a student. Among many other topics, Rove addressed the current low levels of trust in American institutions, including the White House, Congress and the media. 'Things are not what they ought to be. I’m not gonna say that things are normal,' Rove said. 'But I like to remind people we’ve been here before.' Rove gave many examples of previous eras in American history when politics have been, in his words, “brutal, nasty, ugly, divisive and unconstructive.' He said the key to overcoming such eras is in the presidency. " 

February 9, 2018: In Utah talk, Karl Rove suggests President Donald Trump isn’t the worst Americans have seen (Salt Lake Tribune) " President Donald Trump has called Democrats “treasonous” for not clapping during his State of the Union address. He’s mocked the minority leader of the Senate as “cryin’ Chuck Schumer.” And he’s tweeted that actress Meryl Streep is “over-rated.” Still, Republican strategist Karl Rove said Thursday, the political discourse has been more “nasty and mean and vicious” in America’s past than it is now. Trump, he suggested, is not the worst this country has seen. Speaking at the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics, where he studied for two years, Rove offered his take on historical partisanship that has caused deeper rifts. "

February 8, 2018: Karl Rove, ‘architect’ of Bush presidential campaigns, speaks at Hinckley Institute (Fox 13) " Political strategist Karl Rove is speaking at the Hinckley Institute of Politics Thursday. Rove served as the senior adviser and deputy chief of staff during the George W. Bush administration. He’s also known as “the architect” of Bush’s 2000 and 2004 presidential campaigns. Rove will speak at the Hinckley Institute at 2 p.m. It’s free and open to the public. " 

February 3, 2018: 3 of 4 Utahns support tougher ban on cellphone use while driving (Salt Lake Tribune) " Three of every four Utahns apparently would like to send a message to people who use cellphones while driving: Hang up, already. A new poll commissioned by The Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics shows that by a 75-23 margin, Utahns support HB64 by Rep. Carol Moss, D-Holladay — legislation that would clearly ban the use of hand-held cellphones while driving. It would still allow use of hands-free devices. "

February 2, 2018: Romney Says He’ll Decide on Senate Run Mid-Olympics: ‘Join Team Mitt’ (Breitbart Store) " Former Massachusetts governor and failed presidential candidate Mitt Romney said he would announce on February 15 if he is running for the Utah Senate seat being vacated by longtime statesman Orrin Hatch (R-UT). 'I think he’s in,' Jason Perry, executive director of the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics told the Tribune. 'The way this tweet was put out and the message that was delivered seems to indicate that he has a big announcement.' 'You don’t usually send out a tweet to say ‘I’m not interested,' Perry said."

February 1, 2018:  President Trump falsely claims record viewership for his State of the Union address (Salt Lake Tribune) " President Trump falsely claims record viewership for his State of the Union address. Biskupski gives her State of the City speech. McAdams outraises Love. According to a new poll by The Salt Lake Tribune and The Hinckley Institute, 46% of Utah Rep. John Curtis’ constituents don’t know who he is -- something the new congressman says he’ll work to improve. "

January 29, 2018: Opposition to Our Schools Now’s $715M tax hike falls to its lowest level yet (Salt Lake Tribune) " Fifty-six percent of Utahns support an initiative seeking to add $715 million in annual public school funding by boosting income and sales taxes, according to a new poll. That number is in line with recent polls on the Our Schools Now campaign showing a consistent, but not necessarily comfortable, cushion of support for the proposed ballot measure. But the new survey — conducted for The Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah’s Hinckley Institute of Politics — also suggests opposition to Our Schools Now is eroding. Only 38 percent of Utahns say they “strongly” or “somewhat” oppose the initiative, a decline of 5 percentage points since October. "

January 28, 2018: Breaking down the State of The State address (Good4Utah) " On Wednesday, Governor Gary Herbert gave his annual State of the State address, but this year's speech was a little different. Less than a week after  the federal government shutdown he decided to focus on what he calls, 'Utah's unique spirit of collaboration,' where he called for all Utahans to come together and work with one another for a brighter future. Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics Jason Perry stops by this weeks Inside Utah Politics to break down the speech.  'People left the speech thinking, I'm proud to be a Utahn, but they're also thinking we have to think beyond ourselves and that is such an important principal. Decisions today impact tomorrow and we have to, kind of be making laws that think that way, 'Perry said. "

January 27, 2018: Should Utah allow higher-alcohol beer in grocery stores? Utahns are split (Salt Lake Tribune) " The selection of 3.2 percent beer in Utah grocery and convenience stores will, later this year, start a rapid decline. Consumers will see fewer options while businesses, especially in rural areas, could see sales revenue drop. Without legislative action, Utah could soon become one of only two states that maintain the 3.2 percent beer mandate. The Legislature is undecided on the issue. And a new Salt Lake Tribune-Hinckley Institute of Politics poll shows their constituents also are split. "

January 26, 2018: Mia Love Vulnerable In Re-Election Race (Goddard's Political Wire) " A new Salt Lake Tribune-Hinckley Institute of Politics poll shows Rep. Mia Love (R) with a small 5-point edge over Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams (D), 47% to 42%, 'a slightly narrower lead than she had three months ago and just outside of the margin of error of plus or minus 4.9 percentage points'.”

January 25, 2018: A majority of Western voters oppose Trump’s energy-focused public lands agenda, poll finds (Salt Lake Tribune) " New bipartisan polling finds widespread disapproval among Western voters of the Trump administration’s public land policies, including recent reductions to two Utah national monuments and the expansion of lands being made available for energy extraction. New polling commissioned by The Salt Lake Tribune and the Hinckley Institute also found Utah voters divided over the monument reductions, but with a near or slight majorities favoring reduction rather than opposing it. "

January 23, 2018: Trump’s team wants Bears Ears, Grand Staircase lawsuits filed in D.C. sent back to Utah (Salt Lake Tribune) " The Trump administration is urging a federal court in Washington to transfer lawsuits seeking to overturn changes to the Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante national monuments to Utah’s district court, where it says the impact of the ultimate decision will be felt most. A new poll by The Salt Lake Tribune and the Hinckley Institute of Politics shows that about half of Utahns support Trump’s move to dramatically shrink the two monuments. " 

January 19, 2018: Bills and ballot initiative aim at legalizing medical marijuana in Utah (Daily Universe) "A BYU graduate’s proposed 2018 ballot initiative effort could lead to the legalization of medical marijuana in Utah. At the same time, a Utah County lawmaker says he will introduce a package of bills aimed the production and sale of cannabis-based medicines. The initiative needs 113,000 signatures by April 15 in order to be included in November’s ballot. A recent poll conducted by the Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah Hinckley Institute of Politics shows that 75 percent of Utah voters either strongly or somewhat support the initiative. "

January 19, 2018: Utah preps for federal shutdown as politicians squabble over CHIP (KSL) " Gov. Gary Herbert urged the U.S. Senate on Friday to resolve its differences in order to keep the federal government going and to fund the Children's Health Insurance Program. Political observers in Utah said voters are likely to be frustrated over the difficulty Congress has coming to an agreement. 'It's turning out to be the blame game, and putting very important populations in the middle of that game. It is concerning,' said Jason Perry, head of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics. "

January 13, 2018: Money being raised for Sen. Orrin Hatch library, public policy institute (Deseret News) " Both the University of Utah and Brigham Young University have made their interest in the project known, although other campuses in the state may also be hoping to participate. Jason Perry, head of the U.'s Hinckley Institute of Politics, said he and U. President David Pershing are leading an effort to attract the center. A possible site is on South Temple, near the U.'s Thomas S. Monson Center. 'There is huge interest in the papers that Sen. Hatch has collected in his time in office. There are many organizations that would love to be affiliated with him and his center and the university is one of them,' Perry said. "

January 11, 2018: Republican House speaker in Utah won’t seek re-election (Post Register)  "Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics, said the Republican may have his eye on a higher office, perhaps the governor’s seat that is opening in 2020. 'What we know about Greg Hughes is he has a plan for whatever he does,' Perry said. 'He is known for being willing to take risks.'Hughes said he would back Mitt Romney if the former Massachusetts governor decides to run for the U.S. Senate seat that will be vacated when Sen. Orrin Hatch retires at the end of the year.

January 10, 2018: Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes will not seek re-election in 2018 (KUTV) "Jason Perry, director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah, commented, 'I doubt very much that he is finished with politics.' 'Anytime there is a high-profiled political position available, Greg Hughes is on that list,' Perry said. 'And we have some big opportunities coming. He could decide to run for the [U.S.] House, but most speculation is on him being most interested in running for governor' in 2020. "

January 8, 2018: Mitt Romney treated for prostate cancer over the summer (KSL) " Jason Perry, head of the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics, said he sees a 'high likelihood' that Romney is running, and the news about his health shouldn't have any negative effect on the race. 'In fact, I think it's just a positive for Mitt Romney. Get that out on your own terms and put it to rest. He's already an amazingly popular candidate. If he decides to run, nothing's going to hurt him in terms of announcements like that,' Perry said. He said the timing of the news is telling. "

January 3, 2018: Mitt Romney could change race for open Senate seat ( Good4Utah) " Morgan Lyon Cotti is the Associate Director of the Hinckley Institute of Politics at the University of Utah. She notes if Romney does decide to run he would be hard to beat. 'It would be very difficult to challenge Mitt Romney whether from the Republican or Democratic side, said Cotti. 'However if Mitt Romney decides not to run we could see quite a few people going for that seat.' Several people have already declared for the race even before Senator Hatch's announcement. Jenny Wilson, who is a current member of the Salt Lake County Council, is a Democrat who has already announced she's running. " 

January 2, 2018: Senator Hatch announces retirement after more than four decades of service (Good4Utah) "Hatch has also been part of the confirmation of every justice currently sitting on the Supreme Court. Morgan Lyon Cotti, with the Hinckley Institute of Politics says regardless of what you think of him, Hatch is an institution in Utah politics. 'You could argue that he's the most powerful politician Utah has ever had. As President Pro Tempore and the chair of the Senate Finance Committee he has a huge amount of sway,' said Lyon Cotti."

January 2, 2018: Orrin Hatch just announced he’ll retire from the Senate (Vox) " A July poll from the Salt Lake Tribune and the University of Utah's Hinckley Institute of Politics found 78 percent of voters in the state wanted to see Hatch retire after this term, with 57 percent saying he should "definitely not" run for reelection. Hatch polled 1 point behind the Democratic candidate. "