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Takers scarce for Utah lt. gov. position

SALT LAKE CITY, July 26 (UPI) -- The job of lieutenant governor of Utah is proving tough to fill as potential candidates have declined the position, political sources say.

Unnamed state Republican leaders told Sunday's Salt Lake Tribune that the list of those who have turned down invitations from current Lt. Gov. Gary Herbert to replace him when he assumes the governor's office is a long one.

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The Tribune said the list includes House Speaker Dave Clark, House Majority Leader Kevin Garn, Senate Majority Leader Sheldon Killpack, past House Speaker Nolan Karras, and Salt Lake Chamber of Commerce President Lane Beattie, a former Senate president.

Herbert is set to replace Gov. Jon Huntsman as the state's chief executive. Huntsman has been appointed U.S. ambassador to China.

"It's pretty widely known in political circles that Gary has made repeated overtures and it's getting to the point where all eyes are watching to see who is ready to be the also-ran," an unnamed Republican legislator said.

"I can tell you there are a lot of people who want the job," countered Herbert, who said the list of potential lieutenant governor candidates has been whittled from 26 to three or four.

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