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Park City will help decide who succeeds Rob Bishop in Congress


The Park Record.

Many voters in Park City and surrounding Summit County are readying to pick either President Trump or former Vice President Joe Biden for the White House.

But the voters also have a decision to make regarding who will serve in the Capitol. The 1st Congressional District seat is on the ballot in November. The district covers a wide swath of northern Utah and includes the entirety of Summit County.

The incumbent, longtime Republican Rep. Rob Bishop, is retiring, leaving the seat open. Republican Blake Moore and Democrat Darren Parry emerged from the nominating contests and will appear on the ballot in November.

The 1st Congressional District is heavily Republican, and Moore is seen as the overwhelming favorite to win the seat. Bishop won by wide margins as he repeatedly was reelected.

Moore is from Salt Lake City and is a management consultant. He has said the top issue for the campaign is economic recovery. Moore has also said his background provides the experience needed to address issues like balancing a budget and spurring economic growth. He has said the top issue for Park City and Summit County is economic recovery as well. He has said the focus should be on the tourism and hospitality industries.

Parry is from Providence and works in business development for the Northwestern Band of the Shoshone Nation. He has said the top campaign issue is the environment, arguing that the planet is struggling with air pollution and other environmental problems. He has also said the top campaign issue for Park City and Summit County is the environment, especially in the context of public lands policies.

Moore was the top finisher in Summit County in the June primary election, easily beating the Republican field in the countywide totals. Parry, though, narrowly lost Summit County in the primary but won elsewhere in the district to take the nomination.

Summit County is one of the reliably Democratic places in the state, and the Democratic nominees in the 1st Congressional District over the years have enjoyed some of their best results in the county.

Summit County, though, accounts for just a small percentage of the overall votes in the 1st Congressional District, which encompasses the population centers of northern Utah like Ogden. Although Summit County may again back the Democratic nominee, it is expected the Republican on the ballot will enjoy strong showings elsewhere on the way to a win on Election Day.

It is not clear whether there will be politicking in Park City or Summit County this year as the candidates campaign amid the continued spread of the novel coronavirus. The 1st Congressional District candidates traditionally spend much more time in northern Utah than in Summit County.

The candidates are expected to press a range of issues. The coronavirus and the economic havoc it has caused will be especially important to the campaign as the two nominees outline plans to stop the sickness and restart the economy in the district. They will also address issues that are standards in the 1st Congressional District, like public lands and the future of Hill Air Force Base, which is a major employer in northern Utah. Broader issues like health care and international relations will also be broached.

It is a vote-by-mail election. The ballots are scheduled to be mailed on Oct. 13. The Summit County Clerk’s Office expects the ballots should begin arriving two or three days after they are mailed.

More information about the mechanics of the election, including details about voter registration, is available online from the county clerk.


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