More on Utah’s Senate primary 

In Utah’s GOP Senate primary yesterday, Mike Lee defeated Tim Bridgewater 51% to 49%. While both candidates claimed the Tea Party mantle, Bridgewater was more closely tied to the establishment.  Bridgewater, a business consultant who twice ran unsuccessfully for Congress, had the support of outgoing senator Bob Bennett, while Lee, an attorney and former Alito law clerk, was backed by Senator Jim DeMint. It’s another win for conservative insurgents.

Some background on Lee from Michael Warren’s writeup of the race:

Mike Lee, a lawyer whose father was a U.S. solicitor general and president of Brigham Young University, has never run for political office (though the Deseret News notes he ran for student body president at BYU when his father was president). A Mormon like Bridgewater (and most Utahns), Lee earned his law degree at BYU as well and in the late 1990s clerked for a federal appellate court judge named Samuel Alito.

Lee considers himself the true conservative in the race, and he sounds like New Jersey governor Chris Christie when he talks about the need to confront the problems with entitlement programs like Social Security. “Those retiring in, say, the next ten to twenty years need to be told right now we’re gonna have to start making some difficult adjustments,” Lee says. “Including raising the retirement age, including reindexing the payout of benefits based on inflation rather than cost of living.”

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