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GOP and Democrat conventions are Saturday

SHARE GOP and Democrat conventions are Saturday

SALT LAKE CITY — Utah state GOP and Democratic delegates gather in Salt Lake Saturday for the 2010 nominating conventions at the Salt Palace Convention Center.

Some 3,500 Republican and 2,500 Democratic delegates will winnow office hopefuls and determine who will advance in state and federal races.

Republicans will weigh in on their candidate choices for governor, two congressional districts and a U.S. Senate seat. The only incumbent who will not be facing an intraparty challenge Saturday is Utah's 3rd District Rep. Jason Chaffetz.

The top question is whether U.S. Sen. Bob Bennett's political career will end today. Bennett, R-Utah, an 18-year-incumbent, needs at least 40 percent of the delegate vote to get into a June 22 Republican primary, and various delegate polls show that may be out of his reach. Bennett has seven challengers.

On the other side of the Salt Palace complex, 2nd Congressional District Democrats will determine whether Rep. Jim Matheson, D-Utah, wins their nomination outright or faces a primary against challenger Claudia Wright. Democrats will also vote on a U.S. Senate seat, on a gubernatorial ticket and on the Utah House District 25 seat vacated by retiring Rep. Chris Johnson, D-Salt Lake. The Deseret News will post updates throughout the day at deseretnews.com.

Both gatherings are open to the public.

Convention schedules and agendas are available at www.utgop.org and www.utdemocrats.org and full coverage will be online as it becomes available.