Wow, Utahns are all over the front page of the New York Times this morning.
First, Former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman announced he is, indeed, a candidate for President (click). This is fun. He hasn’t got a hope in Hades because he committed the ultimate crime of being reasonable on climate change, but it will be interesting to watch. Maybe having a moderate in the race will give other candidates enough spine to tell the whackos on the far right to shut the heck up.
My big beef with Huntsman is still, and shall always be, his horrendous selection of Lt. Governor–he stuck us with Gary Herbert when he ran, got elected, and then quit to go off to China. Herbert has been far too much of a political hack, and far too little a modifier of all the political hacks in the Legislature, to be an effective governor. Huntsman should have seen this coming and selected more wisely.
The second story is on Sen. Orrin Hatch’s long-standing advocacy of the supplement industry (click). Sen. Hatch has been in the Senate six terms, longer than I’ve worked at the S-E — why must people keep pointing out that he said his predecessor, Sen. Frank Moss, a 3-term senator, had been in office too long? — and one of the reasons he stays elected is all the money he gets from the supplement industries in Utah.
Hatch is a fierce advocate of those supplements, although sacientific analysis shows that they do little more good than a simple healthy diet would. His support for them has become a keystone in the whole supplement industry.
In a way, the article shows how a U.S. Senator is not just a representative from some state, but a huge industry and commercial enterprise in his own right, with commercial ties that reach through the economy of not just his home state but the entire nation.
This is why it is so hard to remove a senator, and why Sen. Hatch is finding it so hard to step down after 36 years.