Maybe I should be a Democrat. I agree with them on a lot of things. My dad was a Democrat. My mom was, too, but I think she is more unaffiliated with any party these days.
One of the silliest conventions in the Utah State Legislature is the constant refusal to remove, on the whole, the greatest conflict of interest in the Legislature, the bribe, otherwise known as the legislative--or lobbying--gift. While Democrats haven't been completely immune to the siren song of bribes, they have been on the forefront of trying to either abolish or severely limit bribes in the Legislature, while the republican 'good-ole-boy' network has grown quite fond of them, thank you very much.
Legislative bribes are the greatest conflict of interest in the Utah Legislature.
Utah has lost an excellent advocate of reducing legislative bribes in Ralph Becker, but Salt Lake City has gained an equally estimable chief executive. I can only hope that other Democrats will champion the cause of which Becker has been at the forefront for the past several years--because it's unlikely that the Republicans will.
But, perhaps, the people of Utah will shame them into it.
A new Deseret News/KSL poll found that 38% of Utahns want to ban legislative gifts all together. Twenty-six percent want to follow Becker's lead in limiting such gifts to $5. I am in the camp of Becker and the 26%. But banning them outright would not be such a bad thing, either.
As I said during last years legislative session:
A legislator's constituents are the people who elected them, not the ones who want to wine and dine and improperly influence them.I'm putting my money this year on the Democratic horse in this race. And I hope the Republicans who, by the logic of fellow legislators, can't be persuaded to agree that legislative gifts are an abhorrence, can be by the logic of the people of Utah.