Senate president questions need for more Swallow investigations
"Remember, there are other criminal investigations proceeding," Lockhart said.
The speaker dismissed any suggestion she could be hurt politically by the decision.
"I'm not going to speculate," Lockhart said. "That's not frankly one of the considerations I have. I'm trying to do what I believe is right and what is right for the people of Utah."
Utah Democratic Party Chairman Jim Dabakis said while Swallow might be seen in a better light, the House investigative committee and other entities are looking at separate issues.
"I don't see this as a defeat for Democrats or Republicans. I see this as the system working," he said. "I think we'll see where things shake out from here."
Maryann Martindale, head of the left-leaning Alliance for a Better Utah, said Swallow may want to see the federal government's decision hurt the other investigations.
"It shouldn't, because they have nothing in common — except for John Swallow," Martindale said.
She predicted the attorney general won't "ever escape the cloud that this has put over the entire office."
Jowers said even though Swallow has avoided the "doomsday" scenario of facing federal charges while in office, there's little chance he could win re-election. And, Jowers said, the attorney general could still end up being forced out of office.
The ongoing investigations, he said, could still potentially lead to criminal charges. Though the DOJ investigation is over, the Salt Lake and Davis county attorneys continue to investigate Swallow and Shurtleff with help from the FBI.
Also, the state elections office is looking into whether Swallow violated campaign financial disclosure laws. Swallow also is the subject of two complaints with the Utah State Bar.
"As long as that's even a shadow of a possibility," Jowers said of Swallow facing charges, "everything's open, from impeachment, resignation, to a grand show of a final stand."
Contributing: Richard Piatt
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