Here’s a look at the news to start your day.
Romney and Trump meet again, and it goes well
Donald Trump and Mitt Romney met again on Tuesday night, this time for a private dinner at Trump International Hotel in New York, according to Politico. The two bonded over frog legs, scallops and lamb chops.
Romney came away from the dinner feeling positive about the president-elect, who’s considering the 2012 GOP nominee as his potential secretary of state.
"I had a wonderful evening with President-elect Trump," Romney told reporters, as Politico reported. "We had another discussion about affairs throughout the world, and these discussions I've had with him have been enlightening, and interesting, and engaging."
As our own Lisa Riley Roche reported, this dinner could be a positive sign for Romney.
“It sends a signal that Romney is a serious candidate, that this was about more than a courtesy interview,” Chris Karpowitz, co-director of BYU’s Center for the Study of Elections and Democracy, told the Deseret News.
Business leaders charge to fix education
Business leaders across the valley hope to see a new ballot initiative for 2018 that will ask voters to increase their state income taxes in order to help Utah schools, according to the Deseret News.
The new ballot would specifically call for voters to increase taxes from 5 percent to 5.875 percent, which would add about $744 million to Utah’s schools, including colleges and universities.
In Utah, business leaders are working together for a program called Our Schools Now, which held an event this week where students wore different costumes related to their dream jobs to show the importance of getting an education.
"Utah’s parents, teachers and employers see a need for an increase of support for our schools," Zions Bank President and CEO Scott Anderson, who co-chairs Our Schools Now, told the Deseret News.
Make The Gateway fun again?
Expect changes to The Gateway mall over the next few years. The shopping center company Vestar just announced that it invested $100 million into the mall, hoping it will make the mall a fun and hip place to be, according to the Deseret News.
“We’re bringing in a world-class boutique hotel at (a cost) of around $60 million,” Jenny Cushing, vice president of leasing with Vestar, told the Deseret News. “We came to the overwhelming conclusion that we needed to create this eclectic, urban district that is heavy on food and beverage, open seven days a week with trendy chef-driven restaurants, entertainment venues, unique boutique retailers, coupled with art and culture.”
In the next five years, Vestar plans to add murals around the mall, as well as “an urban playground” that includes musical swings and a stargazing exhibit.
Vester also hopes to give the mall a sleek makeover.
“With so many millennials coming into the market because of the (burgeoning) tech sector and all of the businesses that are calling Utah home, there is a large insurgence of that population that we feel is underserved,” Cushing explained. “Our goal is not to compete with the (existing) retail environment, but in order to differentiate ourselves, we need to take this to the next level and create something that is very targeted and very unique.”
Matthew McConaughey surprises students
Oscar-winning actor and star of Lincoln car commercials Matthew McConaughey surprised University of Texas students by driving them home, according to the BBC.
A photo has surfaced online of McConaughey giving students a ride in a golf buggy while wearing an orange sweater.1 comment on this story
McConaughey, who graduated from the University of Texas in 1993, worked alongside The Sure Walk project, which helps students get home safely during the nighttime hours at the school, according to BBC.
"Longhorns take care of each other, and it's 'safe' to say Matthew McConaughey agrees," a school Facebook post reads.
This is really the only way to do table tennis
It’s easy enough to play table tennis with one ball, especially if you’ve reached master status.
So why not play with six?
These two players went to the table with six different ping pong balls. And the results were beautiful.