Gov. Leavitt Breaks Down the Numbers Game that is the Presidential Primaries at WTC Utah Event

News Release
For Immediate Release
March 29, 2016

Jessica Nield
Marketing & Communications Director
World Trade Center Utah
(801) 814-3491

Gov. Leavitt Breaks Down the Numbers Game that is the Presidential Primaries at WTC Utah Event
Utah leaders gathered at The Grand America for WTC Utah and Zions Bank Thought Leader Symposium

SALT LAKE CITY – Gov. Mike Leavitt delivered an informative keynote at the second Thought Leader Symposium of 2016, which was cohosted by World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) and Zions Bank. He talked to business and community leaders about the presidential primaries and the role a contested GOP convention may play in the upcoming election.

A contested convention has occurred 26 times since political parties were created, 16 times for Democrats and 10 times for Republicans. With the way the presidential primaries have been playing out, an open GOP convention is possible this year. One thing Gov. Leavitt emphasized in his remarks is that anything can happen.

“We are in uncharted territory here. I don’t think there is any clarity other than what the rules are today and the way it has unfolded in the past,” said Gov. Leavitt. “I think we can all begin to buckle our chinstraps and enjoy what I think is going to be a lesson in the way our two-party system works.”

Gov. Leavitt’s remarks come at a pivotal time during the presidential primaries. Decisions will soon be made that determine who the Democratic and Republican nominees are.

The results of this election will affect all Utah businesses, but international businesses in particular. The new commander in chief will make choices that influence diplomatic relationships and determine the success or failure of trade agreements.

“The next president will have a lot to deal with in the area of foreign affairs,” said WTC Utah President and CEO Derek B. Miller. “There are escalating tensions with Russia, an ongoing civil war and refugee crisis in Syria, and a growing threat of terrorism worldwide. The president’s foreign policy positions will be more important to the safety and security of the U.S. than ever before.”

Miller went on to stress the importance of choosing a leader who is supportive of measures like trade agreements that grow businesses globally.

“The Trans Pacific Partnership, which is the largest free trade deal since the North America Free Trade Agreement, is poised to be accepted or rejected by Congress after the election,” said Miller. “The next president will have a significant impact on how the agreement plays out.”

If passed, the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) will reduce almost all foreign trade barriers in areas where Utah exports the most – IT, chemicals, transportation products and food products. TPP markets represent more than a third of Utah’s exports.

More than 220 business and community leaders, including Gov. Gary R. Herbert, attended the Thought Leader Symposium at The Grand America Hotel. At these quarterly events, national experts are invited to speak about serious topics that impact Utah businesses.



Governor Mike Leavitt speaking about the presidential primaries at the second Thought Leader Symposium of 2016.


Derek B. Miller, WTC Utah president and CEO, addressing attendees.

More than 220 business and community leaders gathered for the WTC Utah and Zions Bank sponsored Thought Leader Symposium.

About World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah)

The mission of World Trade Center Utah (WTC Utah) is to help Utah companies think, act and succeed globally. WTC Utah accomplishes this mission through three key objectives. First is to motivate and educate Utah businesses to expand their global presence through training seminars, regional forums and newsletters focused on international business development, trade issues and export opportunities. Second is to build capacity of Utah businesses for international trade through B2B consultations to identify expansion goals, assess current capabilities, determine overseas opportunities and connect companies with market experts and potential partners. Third is to expand global network of Utah businesses through trade missions and networking with foreign trade officials.