1994. A year in review. What do we know about politics this year? What do we care?

First, many Democratic candidates got stomped this year in Utah. What else is new?Utah House Democratic leaders, who saw their caucus shrink by six in the November election, will try a new tactic in the 1995 Legislature - out-tax-cutting the Republicans. GOP Gov. Mike Leavitt is talking about a $30-million tax cut. House Democrats are talking $60 million. The Democrats' talk may or may not draw much attention.

Utah Democrats seem to be in semi-permanent minority and trying anything is probably better than trying nothing.

- The past year also saw the election of another millionaire to Congress from Utah.

1992 gave us the most expensive U.S. Senate race in the state's history, with three millionaires spending more than $7 million of their own money in the contest. In the end, Sen. Bob Bennett won spending more than $1.5 million of his own money.

This November, Enid Greene Waldholtz spent more than $1.5 million of her own money in unseating freshman Democratic Rep. Karen Shepherd in Salt Lake County's 2nd Congressional District.

Needless to say, this is bad precedent - either incumbents are getting re-elected without significant opposition or millionaires are winning. Doesn't say much for the state of competitive, regular-citizen elections in the Utah - at least in congressional races.

Don't expect anything to be done about this. Incumbents like the campaign finance system and millionaire challengers aren't complaining much, either.

- As 1994 draws to a close, politicos are wondering about what's coming in 1995.

By far the biggest race is for Salt Lake City mayor.

Mayor Deedee Corradini's candidacy is the critical question - she has yet to announce her plans for next year.

Corradini continues to be dogged by the Bonneville Pacific bankruptcy and pending criminal indictments. Corradini was never on the board of directors of Bonneville Pacific but clearly benefited from her connection with the company and has agreed to pay $700,000 to stay out of civil suits over the failed firm.

While her name has been mentioned as one targeted by special federal prosecutors for indictment, Corradini steadfastly maintains she won't be indicted.

If Salt Lake City were Chicago, not being indicted would be cause for celebration for a popular Democratic incumbent politician - which Corradini is.

But Salt Lake City isn't Chicago.

Democratic Party leaders and potential Corradini challengers are worried. With the losses of 1994, Democrats can't afford to lose the mayoralship of the state's largest city, the state's civic and cultural capitol.

Democratic Party chairman Dave Jones, who ran and lost to Corradini in 1991, has cleared some of his political decks in preparation for a run for mayor again. But while interested, Jones says he hasn't made up his mind and what happens in the Corradini-Bonneville Pacific matter over the next few months is critical.

If Corradini is indicted or decides not to run, there's not much of a decision. Jones and many other Democrats will get in.

The real call is what to do if she isn't indicted and she decides to seek a second term? If no credible Democrat gets in the race against her, Republicans can chew her up over Bonneville. While Salt Lake City leans Democratic, the mayor's race is non-partisan and could go Republican.

But should a Democrat get in the race and cut up Corradini? That could split Democratic votes and leave a wounded Corradini facing a strong GOP candidate in the final election - the result a Republican mayor and fractured Democratic Party.

One thing about politics, there's always another year, more controversy, more tough decisions, more winners and losers.