Category Archives: Take 2

Take 2 Podcast: Pres. Biden’s vaccine mandate, Utah County death penalty

In this week’s Take 2 Podcast, host Heidi Hatch speaks to former Utah Speaker of the House Greg Hughes, and former Salt Lake mayoral candidate David Ibarra about the vaccine order President Joe Biden spoke about earlier in the week.

They’ll also talk about Utah County Attorney David Leavitt’s decision to no longer seek the death penalty in cases he prosecutes.

They discuss Utah Senate President Stuart Adams’ recent comments that came under fire about “educating” Utah Jazz guard Donovan Mitchell and helping him to “understand” the state’s critical race theory resolution.

Finally, understand the problems with Utah’s homeless crisis and ideas to fix it.

Guests: Greg Hughes – Former Utah Speaker of the House- businessman and lobbyist
David Ibarra- Former SLC Mayoral Candidate President/CEO at eLeaderTech, Inc.

Vaccine Mandate President Biden: 2 Months after declaring the nations “independence” from the virus
July 25 White House: Vaccine mandates are “not the role of the federal government.”

  • Employers with 100 + employees must require vaccine or test weekly (80 million people)
  • All health care facilities
  • All Federal Employees and contractors – no test out option
  • $14k per violation

Is it legal?
Will states challenge?
Will the Supreme Court weigh in and how quickly?

Death Penalty off the table in Utah County
Utah County Attorney David Leavitt announced Wednesday that he’ll no longer seek the death penalty.

“Pretending that the death penalty will somehow curb crime is simply a lie,” Leavitt said in his video. “The answer to preventing these types of horrible crimes is in education and prevention before they occur. No family wants to hear, ‘My child is dead and that man got a long sentence.’ What they want to hear is, ‘My child was never killed.’”

  • Ronnie Lee Gardner was the last state execution- 13 years ago by firing squad.
  • 2022 Session will tackle the issue again.
  • Senator Steve Urquhart bill failed in final hours in 2106
  • 2018 the bill was pulled without support.

Utah Senate President Stuart Adams at ALEC says Donovan Mitchell did not “understand” state critical race theory resolution.

“I hate to use names, but I will. Donovan Mitchell is not happy with us,” Adams says in the video from May 21 posted on social media. “And you start to get very popular sports stars like that that are pushing back. We’ve got work to do to try to educate them. My text back was, ‘Let’s get after him and let’s go tell him what we’re doing,’ because I don’t really think he understands what happened.”

Utah Homeless Crisis rears its ugly head again both Ibarra and Hughes have worked on the issue, understand the problems and have ideas to fix it.

  • Are streets safe?
  • Do we need an overflow shelter?
  • Who’s problem is it?

Take 2 podcast: COVID liability, the Texas abortion ban and canyon congestion

Host brings in viewpoints from Maura Carabello from the Exoro Group and Sen. Kirk Cullimore, the Utah Senate Majority Assistant Whip

Topics were timely and quick but Cullimore is working on a new bill “COVID-19 Liability Amendments” so we asked what is it and who will it affect?

In the speed round of topics we discuss:

Extreme Masking: Governor Cox addressed maxed out hospital beds this week and tried created controversy of his own talking masks. “Extreme Maskers” the new badge of honor for some. “Masks are not as effective as most of the pro-mask crowd are arguing,” Cox told reporters at a news conference. “We know that they’re just not.”

House caucus met with Cox Wednesday discussing masks and the Senate was meeting with the governor Thursday.

What congestion: Salt Lake County Mayor Jenny Wilson said “no thanks” to both of UDOT’s options to address congestion in Little Cottonwood Canyon. Bus or gondola? Pick your poison.

Abortion Ban: Texas banned abortions after signs of a heartbeat or after about six weeks, before most women know they are pregnant, including in cases of rape or incest. Will we see a similar bill in Utah? Will the Supreme Court react? What happens next?

Take 2 Podcast: Afghanistan suicide bombers kill dozens, 13 US service members and the week of political news in Utah

Heidi Hatch hosts guests Maura Carabello from the Exoro Group and Former Utah House Speaker Greg Hughes.

Topics include the major news story on the same day of the podcast: Afghanistan Suicide Bombers Kill dozens including 13 US Service members

President Biden addressed the nation. We ask our guests: How did he do?

Aug 31 pullout from Afghanistan date remains intact.

Congressional Reaction:

Mike Lee – My prayers are with those killed and wounded in action today, their families, and their teammates still on the ground. Their sacrifice will never be forgotten. It is our duty to protect those Americans still in Afghanistan and those who have helped us in this fight against evil.

Mitt Romney– Horrific terrorist attacks outside Kabul airport. My heart breaks for the U.S. servicemembers wounded in the explosion and the innocent Afghan lives lost. I am inspired by the strength and compassion of our troops and pray for their safety. They represented the very best and finest of America, laying down their lives to aid the most vulnerable in perilous circumstances. This loss of life tears at our collective soul. God bless our fallen & wounded Marines, their families and all of our servicemembers in harm’s way.

Blake Moore– “As the situation in Afghanistan becomes more and more heartbreaking, my team and I send prayers to our citizens, troops, and Afghan allies impacted by today’s attacks. Please know our team remains steadfast in supporting however we can.

Chris Stewart – My prayers are with our troops, our citizens, and the Afghans who were killed or injured in today’s apparent terrorist attack. And my heart breaks for those who remain stranded behind enemy lines in this time of violence and chaos.

There is no excuse for the incompetence displayed by the Biden Administration throughout this disastrous withdrawal. We need to secure the airport, maintain a perimeter, and safely evacuate all Americans and our allies – and we need to do so by any means necessary.

Burgess Owens – Please pray for our soldiers and citizens in Afghanistan, as well as our Afghan allies. This is heartbreaking.

Senator Mike Lee and Senator Mitt Romney working together to get people with Utah connections out of Afghanistan.

Other topics include:

  • COVID-19 and going back to school: How are we doing? Gov. Spencer Cox had closed door meeting to discuss possible executive action.
  • Utah School Board member Natalie Cline is under review, again for a tweet she made about education and welcoming efforts to the LGBTQIA+ community.
  • It’s been a busy summer for the Utah Legislature. Why?
  • Legislative redistricting is underway. Brad Wilson has written an opinion piece about it.

Take 2 Podcast: Biden threatens pandemic funding in Utah, mask mandates in Utah schools, COVID booster shots, Afghanistan

Host Heidi Hatch welcomes Maura Carabello and Greg Hughes to talk politics in Utah and beyond.

School is in session, some kids are wearing masks, though most are not and President Joe Biden isn’t happy.

Afghanistan is a mess but who’s mess is it anyway and gas prices aren’t fun.

Biden Admin threatens Pandemic funding in Utah

“We will not sit by as governors try to block or intimidate educators protecting kids against COVID-19. This isn’t about politics. This is about keeping our kids safe and taking on this virus together.” – President Joe Biden.

Utah’s Gov. Spencer Cox said of the letter: “The letter from the U.S. Department of Education is extremely unhelpful. As we continue conversations with legislators, public health leaders, school leaders, parents, and local health departments about the best way to safely return to schools given the unique circumstances in Utah, the last thing we need is threats from out-of-touch bureaucrats at the U.S. Department of Education.”

Grand County and a portion of San Juan County start school with a mask mandate and the Salt Lake City Mayor announced her intention to declare one for the city.

  • Total Covid cases: 23,603
  • Breakthrough cases: 4,197 (17.8% of cases during the timeframe)
  • Total hospitalizations: 1,107
  • Breakthrough hospitalizations: 206 (18.6% of hospitalizations during the timeframe)
  • Total deaths: 109
  • Breakthrough deaths: 22 (20.2% of deaths during the timeframe)

Lehi Teacher Fired after 1st day of school rant in a chemistry class

“Most of y’all parents are dumber than you. I am going to say that out loud. My parents are freaking dumb and the minute I figured that out, the world opens up.”

Take 2 Podcast: Back to school with COVID feels a lot like last year

Host Heidi Hatch welcomes guests Maura Carabello, from the Exoro Group, and Greg Hughes, a former Speaker of the House in Utah.

Summer is over and it’s time for back to school and it feels like Groundhog Day as the delta variant of COVID-19 has brought back concerns about widespread coronavirus. This week the indoor mask mandate for Salt Lake County children 11 and under, while in school, was vetoed with a 6-3 vote along party lines from the Salt Lake County Council.

Did the Utah Legislature pass the buck by forcing county councils to make the decisions are are local decisions best? House Democrats supported the mandate ahead of the vote and what is the school year going to look like?

COVID-19 breakthrough cases are rising in Utah, accounting for 18% of all cases July 6 through Aug. 6 and 112 fully vaccinated Utahns were hospitalized since the beginning of August. What’s next? Meanwhile booster vaccines were approved for the immunocompromised.

Primary elections are over with ranked choice for 23 cities this fall. We talk about any surprises.

In Washington D.C., the bi-partisan infrastructure passed so what will Democrats do next?

While Sen. Mike Lee voted no, Sen. Mitt Romney helped broker the deal and voted for it. Democrats have released a $3.5 trillion budge resolution that would invest in paid leave, child care, pre pre-kindergarten, free community college, green energy and expansion of Medicare, along with a long list of programs.

In other news, new census numbers are out and its crush time for redistricting.

Take 2: Firework restrictions, federal unemployment and infrastructure

Heidi Hatch hosts Maura Carabello and Greg Hughes to talk about the week of politics in Utah.


Gov. Spencer Cox said he doesn’t have the authority to ban the, the Republican lawmakers will not call a session to tackle the problem, Salt Lake County can’t ban them but Salt Lake City did ban them. Whose problem is this anyway?


Federal bonuses end today. Will job vacancies be filled or has the working situation changed?


Sen. Mitt Romney was part of a bipartisan group that met and worked with the White House on the framework of a deal. There are still details to be worked out but Democrats said they are working on a further $6 trillion spending package on what they call “human infrastructure.”

Meanwhile Rep. John Curtis is working on a climaye change committee for GOP. The three also talk about voting, crime bill COVID-19 cases and vaccinations.


Take 2 Podcast: A conversation with Rep. Chris Stewart

Host Heidi Hatch is joined by Rep. Chris Stewart, a Republican representing Utah’s Second Congressional District.

Stewart talks about Utah’s drought and wildlands fires, the the newly formed Juneteenth federal holiday.

Stewart also discusses the Utah delegation that he was part of meeting with President Joe Biden over the designation of national monuments on Utah lands. Another topic is the vote to repeal authorization for use of military force against Iraq and Biden’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Next time we return to our usual format with Greg Hughes and Maura Carabello.

Take 2 Podcast: Fire season, fireworks, drought and where former Gov. Herbert might run

Heidi Hatch hosts Greg Hughes and Maura Carabello to talk politics and the state of Utah.

Topics include former Gov. Gary Herbert. He is joining Teton Sports, his official painting is unveiled and could he be planning a run against Sen. Mike Lee?

It’s fire season in Utah and combined with a drought could make for a scary fire year. Gov. Spencer Cox banned fireworks on state land but is an all-out ban needed this year? Salt Lake County council woman Aimee Winder Newton suggests banning all personal fireworks at the very least.

Other topics include concern over possible voter suppression

The Dixie College name change moving forward to focus on the words “Utah” and “polytech.” After a vote Dixie will be dumped, Deseret and Red Rock have been ruled out.


  • No charges for a U of U police chief
  • Sen. Mitt Romney in infrasturcture talks
  •  Utah delegation requests meeting with President Biden to talk Bears Ears and Grand Staircase-Escalante 


Take 2 podcast: Pride, QAnon, unemployment, and the Fauci emails

Heidi Hatch, Greg Hughes, and Maura Carabello are back this week to review the political news you might’ve missed — and they’ve got a few things on their minds.

TAKE 2: Utah senators split on riot commission, Wuhan lab buzz, Mike Lee’s challenger

Utah’s two senators cast opposing votes on Friday regarding a proposed commission to investigate the Jan. 6 riot at the U.S. Capitol. The first Republican challenger, Becky Edwards, has announced a run to unseat Sen. Mike Lee. And President Joe Biden wants to know whether COVID-19 could have started in a lab in Wuhan.

Heidi Hatch is joined by Greg Hughes and Maura Carabello to discuss these developments and other Utah political news you might have missed this week.