Partisan politics – the seemingly irreconcilable conflicts between political leaders that seem to characterize all our public discourse – has been a significant concern for voters the last two times Utah Foundation has conducted the Utah Priorities Project. Voters placed it at Number 8 on the top ten list in 2012 and put it again in 8th place in 2016.
Yet it wasn’t so long ago that cooperation between officeholders in Utah’s legislature and elsewhere was more common – and perhaps more necessary. Haven Barlow was first elected to the Utah legislature in 1952, and he served more than 40 years, including two terms as president of the Utah State Senate. He’s a Republican, but he was both preceded and followed by Democratic party leaders in the 1970’s. During that time, the legislature passed some important reforms that still guide the legislature’s work today.
We spoke to Haven Barlow at his office in Layton on August 2, 2016. Our thanks to Carol McNamara of the Olene Walker Institute of Politics and Public Service and to Jenn Barlow for facilitating our conversation. Here’s the full interview (1 hour 25 minutes) on the Walker Institute website.