Entries by Derek Monson

Wise words on religious freedom

Seeking “a cease-fire in the culture wars,” Elder Dallin H. Oaks, member of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and former justice on the Utah Supreme Court, gave a speech late last week on “Religious Freedom in a Pluralistic Society.” His remarks at Claremont Graduate University […]

How well did Utah taxpayers and economy do in the 2016 session?

From the Sutherland Institute perspective, the 2016 legislative session was a good one for both taxpayers and the economy. Taxpayers were spared from varied attempts to extract more money from their wallets, including a proposal from some in the business community to take 20 percent more of Utah taxpayers’ income by hiking income tax rates […]

Reflecting on conservatism as Legislature winds down

Although the 2016 Utah Legislative Session is winding down this week, two proposals – namely, legalizing medical marijuana and banning so-called “non-compete agreements” – are forcing Utahns and policymakers to re-examine their core beliefs. Because we are in Utah, that means forcing Utahns to decide what it really means to be conservative. Just this week, […]

The business of business is … raising our taxes?

What moral or ethical reasoning justifies taking hundreds of millions of dollars from the collective paychecks of Utah’s middle-income, working families and taxpayers? In the minds of part of the business community, it appears to be future economic growth and long-term government planning. These are the lead points offered in support of the proposal from […]

Nonbinding nonsense: questionable tactic for the frustrated

Groups that have had their political and ideological agendas frustrated by Utah’s constitutional order and the conservative instincts of state policymakers have recently begun pursuing a new tactic in their crusade to moderate and “sophisticate” the state’s prudent management of taxpayer resources. They have proposed statewide “nonbinding votes” of the people. The idea of the […]

Op-ed: New hate-crimes bill does not reflect spirit of ‘Utah Compromise’

(S.L. Tribune) Progressive advocates have proposed new hate crimes legislation (Senate Bill 107 – Hate Crimes Amendments) that seeks to increase punishments for criminals whose offense intentionally targets a gay, lesbian or transgender individual. A year after the “Utah Compromise” on LGBT nondiscrimination and religious liberty, this ought to be a time of hope for […]

Section 1332 waiver still embraces drawbacks of Obamacare

Recently, gubernatorial candidate Jonathan Johnson called on Utah policymakers to pursue a section 1332 waiver under Obamacare to address the problem of the coverage gap. As another of Obamacare’s empty promises, this waiver represents unreasonable, bad policy that Utah policymakers should avoid. On the surface, a section 1332 waiver seems to offer both flexibility and […]

How do we successfully fight poverty? Some answers

As we mentioned in yesterday’s blog post, a scholar with the American Enterprise Institute gave testimony to Congress’s House Budget Committee recently on the topic of reducing poverty. The scholar’s story is a fascinating one. His name is Robert Doar, and he gained his expertise on the issue of poverty by working for 18 years […]