Monday, March 04, 2013


Salt Lake City – Media reports continue to show a revolving door between large Republican campaign contributors and special treatment and access to the Attorney General’s Office. The FBI is exploring violations of federal law, but no one is asking about breaches of Utah law or ethics violations. It is time Utah’s state leaders work to restore the public’s confidence by stepping up to put their own house in order.

Utah Democrats are calling on the Governor to appoint a special, independent prosecutor to investigate potential breaches of Utah law and misuse of public office by current Attorney General John Swallow and former AG Mark Shurtleff. Further, the Utah Democratic Party is calling on the Legislature to swiftly pass legislation creating a strong and independent ethics commission, and set it to work investigating John Swallow in his current and previous positions within the office of Attorney General.

“Right now, it is the media and the feds that are investigating these incredibly serious charges, while the Governor and the Republican Supermajority are just twiddling their thumbs,” stated Matt Lyon, Executive Director of the Utah Democratic Party.

”We can take real action and show leadership today,” continued Lyon. “Governor, appoint a state-based, independent prosecutor to look into any breaches of state law and ethics by John Swallow and his predecessor, Mark Shurtleff. Task this prosecutor to report back to the people of Utah to clear Swallow and Shurtleff’s names or take appropriate legal action, so justice is done.”

“Utah Legislature, pass an independent ethics commission with subpoena power and real teeth, and put it to work investigating the serious allegations facing our Attorney General. Over 30 states have commissions or processes to deal with ethics issues arising from the administrative branch. It’s an appropriate check within our balance of power, and there is no reason we can’t correct or prevent these paralyzing conflicts of interest from occurring in our state.”

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