Should Chad Bennion Apologize?

Salt Lake County GOP Chairman Chad Bennion is getting some heat for calling District Attorney Sim Gill a “cop hater” for saying West Valley City Police officers were not justified in the shooting of an unarmed citizen.

Our insiders and readers discuss whether Bennion should apologize or if he has a valid point.

Selected anonymous comments:

Bennion is doing what he does best – foot in mouth. Between him and the State Chair of the GOP we’ll have quite the feast of foot in mouth disease this coming election season. He should also clearly disclose his conflict in working for the Fraternal Order of Police. But he won’t. This is the same Bennion that was in the UT Legislature, a jerk.He has a point but certainly could have stated it better.

Bennion is hurting the GOP, not helping it, with comments like this. He should be removed, whether or not he has apologized. At least that’s the opinion of this lifelong Republican considering leaving the party.

He needs to admit that DA Gill has done exactly what needed to be done, that bad cops ruin it for all good cops and that we need more Sim Gill’s in our government!

There can be no valid point when making such ridiculous charges.

Bennion tried to wear too many hats at once and wound up looking very silly. The people he needs to apologize to are the FOP and County Republicans for doing such an awful job representing them.

Harsh rhetoric demeans the whole argument. You can be critical without getting personal. Apologize and move on.

Although I agree with Bennion that Gill is wrong, Bennion’s approach and tone are also wrong. He is coming across as being self-serving and racist, which is just making him look foolish.

Chad Bennion committed a cardinal PR error, he became the story.

Bennion should resign. Using the power of his office within the GOP to push the interests of an employer is an inexcusable breach of ethics.Bennion should apologize. His comments are inflammatory, offensive, and detract fom the issue at hand – a wrongful death at the hands of two West Valley police officers.Bennion’s comments repeating what Gill himself has said about watching a police beating from his childhood have not been covered fairly. Gill has been doing a great job.Bennion’s judgment is not good. He’s a gift to Democrats. Now we have to put up with politicizing every case from Trevon Martin to Danielle Willard. Enough is enough. Bennion is an embarrassment even to his own kind. Chad doesn’t have a clue how to bring an issue of this magnitude to the public’s attention.

How can Chad Bennion criticize an honest man, Sim Gill, and not criticize Attorney General John Swallow? Chad Bennion should resign.

Chad’s comments were not helpful in the dialogue – there’s a certain way to handle this press piece and he totally flubbed it. The guy needs a decent PR support voice.

Conflict of interest, racist ignorant comments, inappropriate use of role of SLCO GOP Chair. I’d be fired if I spoke out politically, especially if I did so as badly as Bennion. My employer would not care for the negative attention and would cite my poor judgement/ poor impulse control. Chad has crossed a line that shouldn’t be crossed.

There has to be a back story to this we aren’t aware of yet. When Chad was given the opportunity to soften his statement he chose to continue the attack. It feels personal in its nature.

Bennion isn’t getting fair media coverage of what Gill said about his childhood. Gill is right to provide balance to police power.

I have watched Chad Bennion since he was in the Legislature. If he were wise, he would be more careful. Bennion represents that extreme element of both parties that thinks criticism equals validation. In other words, if the media doesn’t agree then you are on the right track. In this case, he needs to apologize and learn from his error. His erroneous ways combined with the Swallow ripples will cost the GOP hard earned seats they couldn’t win just 6 years ago.

I understand why Bennion is complaining: Gill is making the state’s (GOP) Attorney General look so bad! The GOP might want to get its own house in order before complaining about Gill or any other county attorney in the state who is actually doing the job he was elected to do.

Cops are not always in the right. The police are the point of the spear, the contact point between government power and the people. Policing of the police is vital. Bennion was pandering and out of line.

Bennion’s comment was the sort of circus show silliness one would expect from a Democrat Party Chair Jim Dabakis but Utah’s Republican Party leader shouldn’t stoop to that level.

As a very conservative Republican I condemn his words. Chad Bennion has overstepped his duties and it might be time for him to resign.

Bennion will prove to be an unstable lighting rod that will continue to embarrass the Republican Party.

I like Chad, but this is insane. He dug a hole and just keeps on digging. It’s too bad that he has shot his credibility in such a silly way. I hope James Evans is watching and avoids making a similar mistake.

The press is doing a bad job of fairly covering the story. Bennion isn’t a racist. He was quoting Gill re: his childhood which happens to be outside the country. Both have valid points and are good men.

Bennion should absolutely apologize for his inflammatory comments. In addition to being completely offensive, they also detract from the issue at hand – a wrongful death at the hands of two West Valley police officers.

I really hope the SLCO GOP keeps Bennion around. That will make the Gill, Winder and Matheson elections SO much easier for Utah Democrats.

Chad blew his first major media op. Given he is a former legislator, he should know better.

Not only should he apologize for the “cop hater” statement, he should apologize for referencing Gill’s ethnic background. Talk about inappropriate stereotyping!

He should, but he won’t. He will go to his grave never understanding why he should have. He couldn’t have possibly given Sim a better early-2014-election-gift.

Respondents include – 

Fred Adams, Stuart Adams, Jess Agraz, Scott Anderson, Laura Arellano, Patrice Arent, Bette Arial, Neil Ashdown, Bruce Baird, Heather Barney, Steve Barth, Jeff Bell, Tom Berggren, Mike Bertelsen, Ron Bigelow, Emily Bingham-Hollingshead, Rob Bishop, Laura Black, Nanci Bockelie, Charles Bradley, Jim Bradley, Ralph Brown, Chris Bleak, Curt Bramble, Joel Briscoe, Ralph Brown, Aaron Browning, Ken Bullock, Ric Cantrell, Maura Carabello, Marty Carpenter, Rebecca Chavez-Houck, Kay Christensen, David Clark, Kim Coleman, Peter Corroon, Tim Cosgrove, Fred Cox, Lew Cramer, Gene Davis, Richard Davis, Brad Daw, Alan Dayton, Margaret Dayton, Mike Deaver, Brad, Dee, Joseph Demma, Jake Dennis, Dan Deuel, Jeff Dixon, Brian Doughty, Carl Downing, Randy Dryer, Susan Duckworth, Donald Dunn, Alan Eastman, Becky Edwards, Scott Ericson, Chase Everton, Jessica Fawson, Janice Fisher, Wendy Fisher, Lorie Fowlke, Ronald Fox, Claire Francis, Ryan Frandsen, Adam Gardiner, Jordan Garn, Ernie Gamonal, Luke Garrott, Dave Gessel, Sheryl Ginsberg, Natalie Gochnour, Robert Grow, Karen Hale, David Hansen, Neil Hansen, Joe Hatch, Jeff Hartley, Dan Hauser, Lynn Hemmingway, Deidre Henderson, Neal Hendrickson, Casey Hill, Lyle Hillyard, Kory Holdaway, Randy Horiuchi, Ben Horsley, Bruce Hough, Scott Howell, Greg Hughes, Miriam Hyde, Allison Isom, Casey Jackson, Eric Jergensen, Mike Jerman, Jonathan Johnson, Michael Jolley, Gordon Jones, Leslie Jones, Pat Jones, Kirk Jowers, Jeremy Keele, Brian King, Scott Konopasek, Steve Kroes, Chris Kyler, Carter Livingston, Fred Lampropoulos, Clark Larsen, Douglas Larson, David Litvack, Larry Lunt, Matt Lyon, Ben McAdams, Daniel McCay, Gayle McKeachnie, JT Martin, Maryann Martindale, Jason Mathis, Bob Mayhew, Karen Mayne, Bret Milburn, Derek Miller, Rob Miller, Ethan Millard, Brett Millburn, Karen Morgan, Jeffery Morton, Mike Mower, Holly Mullen, Wayne Niederhauser, Mike Noel, Randy O’Hara, Ralph Okerlund, James Olsen, Val Oveson, Kelly Patterson, John Pearce, Helen Peters, Karen Peterson, Frank Pignanelli, Becky Pirente, Marie Poulson, Jason Powers, Tami Pyfer, Joe Pyrah, Mike Reberg, Jill Remington Love, Lauren Richards, Holly Richardson, Robin Riggs, James Roberts, Luz Robles, Ross Romero, Carol Sapp, Don Savage, Bryan Schott, Shauna Scott-Bellaccomo, Jay Seegmiller, Jennifer Seelig, Patrick Shea, Randy Shumway, Soren Simonsen, Jeremy Slaughter, Brendan Smith, Brian Somers, Carol Spackman-Moss, Robert Spendlove, Barbara Stallone, Howard Stephenson, David Stringfellow, Mike Styler, Shinika Sykes, Juliette Tennert, Gary Thorup, Kevin Van Tassell, Royce Van Tassel, Doug Thompson, Michael Waddoups, Laura Warburton, Chuck Warren, Christine Watkins, LaVarr Webb, Todd Weiler, Alan West, Mark Wheatley, Larry Wiley, Ted Wilson, Carl Wimmer, Mike Winder, Travis Wood, Thomas Wright, Crystal Young-Otterstrom

Results from the Insider poll can be heard on KSL Radio every Friday and are published on Utah every Monday.