How to Sound Smart About Utah Politics – July 16, 2014

John Swallow and Mark Shurtleff charged with multiple felonies. Shurtleff says the investigation is a “political witch hunt.” Lockhart rolling in campaign cash.



  • 111 days until the 2014 midterm elections
  • 194 days to the opening day of the 2015 legislature
  • 475 days until the 2015 elections
  • 551 days to the 2016 Iowa Caucuses (tentative)
  • 846 days until the 2016 presidential election

Wednesday’s top news stories:

  • Former Attorneys General John Swallow and Mark Shurtleff are arrested and charged with multiple felonies [Utah Policy, Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Shurtleff holds a news conference accusing Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill of conducting a political witch hunt [Utah Policy, Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Here’s video of Shurtleff’s arrest [KUTV].
  • Utah political leaders react to the arrests [Tribune, Daily Herald].
  • There may be more arrests tied to the Swallow/Shurtleff scandal [Tribune].
  • The Department of Justice is getting a black eye for ending their probe into Swallow and Shurtleff [Tribune].
  • Where does the Swallow/Shurtleff scandal rank among Utah’s history of political wrongdoing? [Tribune]
  • Democratic Congressional candidate Brian Wonnacott is struggling to raise money for his challenge to Rep. Jason Chaffetz [Utah Policy].
  • House Speaker Becky Lockhart has the most campaign cash among Utah’s legislators [Utah Policy].
  • An audit says Salt Lake County’s new system to provide mental health treatment is working fairly well [Tribune, Deseret News].
  • Salt Lake City may raise green fees in order to reduce an operating deficit at city owned golf courses [Tribune].

Today in history:

  • 1790 – The District of Columbia was established as the seat of the U.S. government.
  • 1951 – J.D. Salinger’s novel “The Catcher in the Rye” was published.
  • 1945 – The United States exploded its first experimental bomb in the desert near Alamogordo, N.M.
  • 1969 – Apollo 11 blasted off from Cape Kennedy on the first manned mission to the moon.
  • 1980 – Ronald Reagan won the Republican presidential nomination at the party’s convention in Detroit.