Two Incumbents Cruise on Primary Night While One Falls

john westwood cedar city utah state representative

John Westwood

Evan Vickers utah state senator

Evan Vickers

Written by Bob Bernick on . Posted in Today At Utah Policy

Well, it wasn’t even close in two of the key Utah legislative primary contests Tuesday.

But the third was more of a contest.

Sen. Evan Vickers, R-Cedar City, and Rep. John Westwood, also R-Cedar City, easily defeated their intraparty challengers in what was expected to be a rather low turnout for a primary contest.

And former Rep. Brad Daw, R-Orem, had his revenge against current Rep. Dana Layton, R-Orem, in a closer contest.

There are always local issues and personalities in primary contests.

But at least for former Sen. Casey Anderson – who was knocked out of office two years ago by Vickers (he was then in the Utah House) – Tuesday was bitter.

If Anderson had gotten one more delegate vote in Senate District 28 in the state GOP convention several weeks ago, he would have unseated Vickers.

And it may be the last time that GOP delegates get the chance to take out an incumbent.

Come 2016 any sitting officeholder – who may receive the wrath of hard-core conservative delegates – will be able to side step them, and get on their party’s primary ballot via a voter signature petition.

And who knows how much the Count My Vote/SB54 issue played in Tuesday’s elections.

All three of the incumbents – Vickers, Westwood and Layton – voted for the SB54 “grand compromise” bill in the 2014 Legislature.

That compromise ended the Count My Vote citizen initiative petition drive – and allows come 2016 a dual track party candidate nomination process.

Vickers and Westwood clearly faced some unhappy delegates in their GOP conventions – upset over their own incumbents voting to neuter future delegates’ power in candidate selections.

The Daw-Layton contest had its own internal soap opera, however.

The Utah House investigation of former GOP Attorney General John Swallow found that Swallow and his high-riding campaign consultant, Jason Powers, “hid” payday loan contributions and from that $400,000 war chest spent tens of thousands of dollars in a negative campaign against Daw.

Daw had the political courage to propose some state controls on the payday loan industry in the state.

And Powers even boasted on his web site after the 2012 election that he had a hand in defeating Daw.

Layton took contributions – both in-kind and money – from Powers’ “non-profit” foundation, although she has maintained for two years that she didn’t know what Powers was up to when she defeated Daw in the 2012 GOP primary in House District 60.

Daw road the Swallow/Powers’ horse hard in his 2014 re-match.

Final, but unofficial, results show that Daw pounded out a victory over Layton, 54-46 percent.

It wasn’t even close for Vickers and Westwood, however. Vickers got 67 percent to Anderson’s 33 percent.

Vickers, UtahPolicy is told, set out to raise around $100,000 in his primary rematch against Anderson – an unheard of amount for a legislative primary contest.

Financial filings with the Utah Elections Office showed as of Tuesday night Vickers had raised $84,460 and spent $46,294 in the convention and primary.

Final totals may drive Vickers’ primary campaign even higher.

Anderson clearly didn’t have the financial resources to match Vickers. Anderson raised $7,445 and spent $4,661.

On top of all his money, Vickers had the endorsements of many local political leaders and officeholders, most of the Senate and even GOP Gov. Gary Herbert.

Anderson was out-gunned financially and in star power.

Westwood also had an interesting race.

Blake Cozzens is the Iron County GOP chairman. He refused to resign his party post even as he challenged Westwood, a sitting GOP incumbent.

State party bylaws say all party officials must stay neutral in any intra-party challenges.

And state party chairman James Evans openly called Cozzens on the carpet, saying he should resign his county party chairmanship or get out of the race.

Cozzens did neither.

In addition, Westwood voted for SB54.

And Cozzens co-founded an active group opposing Count My Vote and its direct-to-primary candidate citizen initiative.

So Cozzens seemed to have the perfect political storm – even if he couldn’t beat Westwood in the Iron County GOP convention (and he couldn’t), he could appeal to GOP loyal primary voters to punish Westwood for throwing them under the bus.

But it didn’t work.

Westwood beat Cozzens handily, 72-28 percent.

Yes, Westwood had more money that Cozzens, but not by much (compared to Vickers over Anderson).

Westwood raised $14,779 and spent $7,195 to Cozzens’ $3,751 raised and $3,429 spent.

Clearly, Cozzens spent all the money he had, but it wasn’t enough.

All three districts are heavily Republican and even if the winners Tuesday night have an opponent, it won’t matter.

Vickers, Westwood and Daw are headed back to the 2015 Utah State Legislature.

If you are counting (and I am even if you are not), I predicted wins for Vickers, Westwood and Daw in a Monday UtahPolicy column. I’m just saying . . .



Cedar City Police Car

Cedar City Police Car

Cedar City:

Darin Adams
Robert Allinson – Chief
Sheldon Barney
Mike Bleak
Jared Brown
David Bulloch
David Evans
David Holm
David Mcintyre
Keith Millett
J.R. Robinson
Keith Savage
Murray Suttlemyre
Jason Thomas
Jon Williams
Jerry Womack

[email protected]


Chief Jackson Ames
Sgt. Mike Berg
Cpl. Milt Laub
Officer Jeremy Dunn
Officer Ryan Coleman

Post Office

US Post Office

US Post Office

The Post Office used to be located where the Cedar City Offices are now. The post office offers Express, Priority, First-Class and Parcel mail. They also sell stamps and envelopes. This post office services zip code 84720 (Addresses in Cedar City south of 200 North) and 84721 (Addresses north of 200 North, including Enoch). Walter Granger served as postmaster from 1914 to 1922 (He also served as mayor). The current postmaster is Christina Hahn.

333 N Main St

Aquatic Center

Aquatic CenterThe aquatic center opened in January 2010 and has three swimming pools: leisure, play and competition. There is a hydrotube slide, lazy river, spa, observations area, bathrooms, offices and more. Family Night Swim Series is held every Monday from 6 – 9 p.m. for $10 per family. It cost about $7,000,000 to build. Lake at the Hills is next to the aquatic center.

2090 Royal Hunte Dr


Cedar City Cemetery

Cedar City Cemetery

The first burial took place in 1853. There is a veterans monument in the Cedar City cemetery.

173 West 685 North


Maile Wilson

Maile Wilson | Mayor of Cedar City

Maile Wilson 2014-
Joe Burgess 2010-2013
Gerald R. Sherratt 2001- 2009
Harold Grant Shirley 1990-2000
Robert H. Linford 1982-1989
Jack Sawyers 1978-1981
L. Kerry Jones 1974-1977
Loren A. Whetten 1966-1973
Kumen S. Gardner 1962-1965
Arnold E. Anderson 1954-1961
L. Verl Broadbent 1950-1953
Gronway R. Parry 1948-1949
Myron F. Higbee 1946-1947
Henry Hunter Lunt 1938-1945
Charles R. Hunter 1934-1937
Walter K. Granger 1930-1933
Eugene Christensen 1926-1929
Walter K. Granger 1924-1925
Parley Dalley 1922-1923
Archibald Swapp Jr. 1920-1921
Elias M. Corry 1918-1919
Thomas Jedediah Jones 1916-1917
William H. Leigh 1914-1915
Donald C. Urie 1912-1913
John S. Woodbury 1911
Uriah T. Jones 1910
John S. Woodbury 1908-1909
Daniel T. Leigh 1906-1907
George W. Middleton 1904-1905
Thomas Jedediah Jones 1902-1903
Robert W. Heyborn 1900-1902
John V. Adams 1898-1899
Henry W. Lunt 1896-1897
Joseph T. Wilkinson 1894-1895
Henry Leigh 1893-1894
John Parry 1891-1892
Charles M. Heyborne 1889-1890
Lehi Willard Jones 1887-1888
John Parry 1884-1886
Robert W. Heyborne 1881-1883
Christopher J. Arthur 1879-1880
John Chatterly 1877-1878
Francis Webster 1873-1876
Homer Duncan 1871-1872
John M. Higbee 1867-1870
Henry Lunt 1861-1866

Heritage Center

Cedar City Heritage Center

Cedar City Heritage Center

The Cedar City Heritage Center includes a theater with a balcony, conference rooms and a banquet room. Events that take place here include the Neil Simon Festival, the American Children’s Christmas Festival, Cedar City Music Arts productions and Orchestra of Southern Utah concerts.

105 North 100 East

Cedar City Library

Cedar City Library

Cedar City Library

The Cedar City Public Library is next to Main Street Park. It used to be where ADB Bank was located. Steve Decker is the director. There are thousands of books to choose from and children’s story time is on Wednesday’s and Thursday’s. The library is closed Sundays and holidays.

303 N 100 E