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Robert Gehrke: Salt Lake City mayoral candidates have exchanged barbs on the inland port. Let’s look at what really happened.

It’s probably the most incendiary issue in the Salt Lake City mayoral campaign. And, if you listen to any of the 714 debates between Erin Mendenhall and Luz Escamilla, you’ve heard vastly divergent narratives about how the port came into being.

So I thought I’d take a little time to unravel some of the competing viewpoints — not so much as a fact check or to say one candidate is right or wrong — but to contextualize what happened and hopefully help voters understand what the city did (or didn’t do) leading to the port.

Mendenhall: “I wish the city had been given a vote of, ‘Do you want a port or not,’ but that has unfortunately never been a reality for us.