What Happens if the Feds Leave John Swallow Alone?

Reports are swirling that Attorney General John Swallow may be cleared in an ongoing federal investigation. What would that do to the Utah Legislature’s probe? Our readers and insiders weigh in.


Selected anonymous comments:

The legislative investigation is a waste of taxpayer money. I hope it makes him more sympathetic which is what he always was, an innocent man.

Swallow has a lot invested in the “you can’t prove I broke the law” defense. If the feds decline to prosecute, it will embolden him to demand that the political impeachment process adheres to the much higher standard employed by the courts. Either way, his odds of getting re-elected are almost non-existent.

They are investigating differing issues, statutes and time periods. Further, there remain the joint county investigations, the Lt. Governor’s investigation and the Utah State Bar investigation.

I think we’re stuck with him for three more years. Then I’ll worry Utah voters will reelect him!

If top aides for attorney general’s can promise lobbying help to influence US Senator’s legally, it’s still not ethical. If changing a company into your wife’s name on the day of the reporting deadline and not reporting the income from that lobbying hookup is legal, it’s still not ethical. Does anyone besides Cherilyn Eagar trust this man, even in the state Republican Party?

So, we’re suddenly going to start letting the Feds tell us what to do? Please. The impeachment standard is high crimes, misdemeanors, or malfeasance. Even if Swallow’s cleared on the first two, it seems obvious he’s failed the malfeasance test. Besides, at this point, is there anyone besides John Swallow who still wants John Swallow to continue as AG? Do us all a favor and resign already, John. There are always spots for disgraced public officials on TV reality shows.

Swallow supporters in the legislature will most likely use this to try and kill the investigation. The House committee should proceed as planned and not bow to pressure. It’s too important not to.

Personally, I’ve never felt there were any breaches of the law in the Swallow case, but there seems to be plenty of ethical breaches, lack of judgement, and abuses of power — which have led to a loss of the public trust. The legislative process needs to continue to investigate these matters, then determine how to protect the AG’s office from those who would buy influence and favors from that office.

This will be an interesting study in political character assassination if there is no actual substance to the many claims.He wins the first battle, but the South won at Bull Run.

It is a waste of taxpayer dollars for the legislature to push forward. They can get the results of the multiple investigations that are being conducted with no cost if they simply wait until those investigations are concluded. Since those investigations will to resolve before the legislature’s investigation there is no valid purpose served by wasting 4 million dollars in what is nothing more that political grandstanding.

As usual, the people who want Swallow’s hide nailed to the barn door, will want more investigations, regardless of the Federal authorities’ decision if he is cleared.

With the threat of jail time gone hopefully the sneaky snake will slither into some hole.

He wishes! There is no way Swallow is getting out of this one.

There may be plenty of evidence that may not be enough to convict, but is strong enough to impeach. If the House doesn’t do their investigation, such evidence may never be discovered or shown to the public.

It will just show that the Tribune and City Weekly are political hacks.

If the feds don’t pursue him it makes it more important, from a legislative perspective, that the other investigative bodies do come up with something against him. The legislature is not likely to feel comfortable about impeaching John Swallow if the county attorneys and the Bar refuse to take action against him.

Maybe the people who are making the allegations should pay the costs and if they are right, they could be reimbursed.

Though the Legislature is “fangless” to begin with (no legal basis for actual impeachment investigations), they’ll continue their PR-driven “investigation” to appear as if ethics matter. Lockhart for Governor?

Unfortunately, it could de-fang the investigation. What the Legislature needs to focus on is ETHICS. Following the letter of the law while ignoring the intent and spirit of the law is not good enough for the Utah Attorney General.

If the Feds decide not to prosecute, that doesn’t mean they don’t have important information. It also doesn’t mean he hasn’t broken state laws, violated campaign rules, or violated the Bar Association’s ethics rules. Or behaved in a manner unbecoming a Utah public official.

If he’s cleared criminally does not mean he isn’t guilty of malfeasance. The legislative investigation should proceed so if he’s exonerated that way, there isn’t a question.

The Legislative investigation has plenty to focus on with ethical concerns. The problem in the end is that with almost no exception the acts occurred prior to taking office as AG. In the end this will have been a mistake by the voters not properly vetting the candidate. This becomes a great argument for abolishing the caucus system that allows fan clubs to push a candidate to victory despite underlying concerns that a primary would flush out earlier, absent a caucus/convention system. The caucus has become little more than a form of voter suppression by eliminating the public opportunity to decide for themselves.

A “we’re not gonna prosecute” letter from the feds certainly helps Swallow, but it’s not enough to quench the firestorm (and it isn’t being “cleared”). The House members are worried about repercussions from that firestorm in 2014. Swallow created the firestorm, and he isn’t going to get out of it easily.

Media fueled the flames; the public loved the gore; the legislature was cowardly and soon it will be over!

Speaker Lockhart mentioned that criminal charges are not necessary to proceed with impeachment. If Swallow has violated the public trust or done something extremely unethical – whether or not he is charged criminally – they may still impeach him. Although, that may be unlikely, anyway.

Perhaps some will see that a witch hunt is just that.

My hunch is that the legislature would love to let go of this issue and stop perpetuating the embarrassment, so they would find a way to let their investigation fade away. But then again, I don’t know if there are state laws he may have violated which the feds aren’t reviewing.

The Legislature only rolled out this committee for looks. They were hoping the feds would file something and do the heavy lifting.

Who the heck knows? He may be cleared, but everyone thinks he stinks to hog heaven. That is a horrible stench to walk around with in life.

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

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