Trump-Backed Candidate Scores Big

( – A state lawmaker aligned with former President Donald Trump outperformed Utah’s incumbent Governor Spencer Cox at the Utah GOP’s nominating convention.

Representative Phil Lyman, known for his strong support of Trump, secured 67.54% of the delegate votes, while Governor Cox garnered only 32.46%, as reported by state delegate Aaron Bullen.

Despite the convention’s outcome, Governor Cox secured enough signatures to appear on the primary ballot. He met state requirements by obtaining 28,006 certified signatures just above the necessary 28,000.

Lyman, who was pardoned by Trump in December 2020, had previously faced legal issues when he was convicted for trespassing after organizing a protest against federal land management in Utah.

Additionally, he faced a restitution payment of $96,000, a 10-day jail sentence and a probation period for his protests in Recapture Canyon, according to KUTV.

At the convention, Cox apparently faced a hostile reception with “boos” as he took the stage, whereas Lyman was met with cheers, as reported by Fox 13 News.

During his speech, Cox defended his gubernatorial record and cited significant legislative achievements.

“Maybe you’re upset that I signed the largest tax cut in Utah history. Maybe you hate that I signed constitutional carry. Maybe you hate that I signed the most pro-life legislation in Utah history,” he stated.

He added, “Maybe you hate that I sent troops to the border. Maybe you hate the 60 lawsuits we filed against President Biden in this administration. Maybe you hate that we stopped DEI and ESG and CRT.”

Cox also questioned some of the delegates’ dissatisfaction with his tenure, wondering aloud, “Or maybe it’s something much more cynical. Maybe you hate that I don’t hate enough.”

Reflecting on his own experiences with the law, Lyman compared them to the restrictions imposed during the COVID-19 pandemic in his speech and suggested a similar sense of confinement.

“All of us have a feeling of what it feels like to be in a prison. As I watched coronavirus roll out with the coronavirus task force, with the business lockdowns, it felt like a prison to me,” he declared. “So you know what that looks like. I don’t want to build prisons in Utah.”

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