Politics

Delegating Denver #49 of 56: Utah

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Utah

Total Number of Delegates: 29 Pledged: 23 Unpledged: 6

How to Recognize a Utah Delegate: Based on national news stories, most Americans would think it was easier to get a second wife than a second drink while visiting Utah — as if residents of the Beehive State were a bunch of polygamists who repressed recreational refreshment to maximize their reproduction abilities. That's ancient history. Utah liquor laws have been somewhat relaxed since the 2002 Salt Lake Winter Olympics, and polygamists are rarely seen outside of the Costco in St. George. Forget weird and wacky: The news about Utahns is their steadfast willingness to assist a stranger. It still may be the last place in America to get a full-strength beer after 10 p.m., but it’s the first place for courteous emergency roadside service. Getting a flat tire in Utah is like winning the karma lottery. Within minutes, thirty cars will stop to offer help. While assisting strangers with a smile, Utahns will break down tasks along gender lines, putting males in charge of car repairs while the females set up tables and whip up a quick snack from bags and boxes of recently purchased Costco groceries. Mormons on a mission, or not, Utahns win followers through friendliness and favors. Utah delegates in Denver will be the ones wielding their winning ways with the other state's delegates. They are the door-holders, the reservation-makers and the sign-painters. They will dress in crisply pressed casual dress pants topped with button-down long-sleeved shirts that are embroidered with vaguely familiar but unplaceable Utah-based corporate names like Novell, Xmission, iBAHN and Altiris. Conversely, their hair will be wash-and-wear. Females will wear easy and adorable choppy-layered cuts, while males will wear side-parted short cuts and sport full mustaches that accentuate the sparkle in their eyes.

Famous Utahns: Hotel founder J. Willard Marriott; hearing aid inventor Harvey Fletcher; television inventor Philo Farnsworth; Gore-Tex inventor Bill Gore; leadership scold and productivity-tool publisher Stephen Covey; Atari and Chuck E. Cheese founder Nolan Bushnell; machine gun and semi-automatic handgun inventor John Browning; ninth and seventeenth National Security Advisor Brent Scowcroft; bank robber Butch Cassidy; film director Hal Ashby; actors Wilford Brimley, James Woods and Patrick Fugit; porn star Jaime Bergman and squirt star Cytherea; Playmate Charlotte Stokely; Internet "fratirist" Maddox; pop-rock acts the Used and SHeDAISY; sibling pop group the Osmonds; Dancing With the Stars siblings Derek and Juliann Hough, sibling athletes Andre and Kevin Tyson; basketballer Devin Brown; footballers Steve Young and Merlin Olsen.

Famous Utah Democrats: Sixth governor (and grandfather of Bruce, great-grandfather of Laura) George Dern; twelfth governor (father of Scott Junior and Jim) Scott Matheson; former U.S. attorney Scott Matheson Jr.; United States Representative Jim Matheson; former Salt Lake City mayor Rocky Anderson; attorney general candidate Jean Welch-Hill; community activist Luz Robles.

Famous Utahns With Denver Connections: Jack Kerouac On the Road inspiration Neal Cassady; sitcom actress and comedy club headliner Roseanne Barr; two-term Colorado Higher Education commissioner Marshall Crawford; Western artist Nathan Solano; polygamist Warren Jeff's brother Seth Jeffs.

State Nickname: The Beehive State, Deseret, the Salt Lake State (official); Land of the Mormons, Land of the Saints, Land of Multiple Mothers, Plural Wife Paradise (unofficial) Population: 2,550,063 Racial Distribution: 85% white, 1% black, 1% Native American, 2% Asian, 11% Hispanic Per Capita Personal Income: $24,977 Unemployment: 6.3%

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Cory Casciato is a Denver-based writer with a passion for the geeky, from old science fiction movies to brand-new video games.
Contact: Cory Casciato