Secret recording stirs troubled waters for Attorney General Swallow


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  • mountain man Salt Lake City, UT
    Feb. 2, 2013 11:01 a.m.

    I wonder if the religion element is being skipped over here. JJ was active in his church. So was Mr. Swallow. Just as any member of any religious group will attest to: it is very easy to get the wool pulled over your eyes when you have so much uber trust in the other person and their values. It might be a better mantra to say if you belong to a religious group, do not do business with other members of that group. It is too easy to get conned. JJ was looking for blood at the donut meeting and he tried very hard to try to get mr. swallow to incriminate himself. Thank goodness Mr. Swallow seemed to hold his own. I believe swallow is innocent of all accusations. when it is proved so, I want you to remember you heard it from me first! Mountain man. Your source for ahead of the curve speculations.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    Jan. 31, 2013 11:27 a.m.

    Harry Reid maybe completely involved in the Jeremy Johnson situation but because his
    press secretary says he's not were to just believe this nonsense. It is such a double standard placed on John Swallow as per Harry Reid. Fox 13 did a Swallow hit piece with Jeremy Johnson last night. Why do we give credibility to a liar and felon and hold judgment on our elected Attorney General? John Swallow is innocent until proven guilty that is the American way.

  • budhenson midland, MI
    Jan. 31, 2013 8:16 a.m.

    "Johnson secretly recorded the April 20, 2012, conversation with Swallow at a Krispy Kreme doughnut shop in Orem."

    Sounds like a sticky situation to me.

  • Capsaicin Salt Lake City, UT
    Jan. 31, 2013 4:00 a.m.

    Why was Swallow meeting with Johnson in an "unofficial capacity"? I think Johnsons accusations have teeth....have some truth to them. We should all not care until the real story comes out. Either way he should have dealt with this before being elected. Knowing that John Swallow was a lobbyist for legal predatory check lenders (Check City) doesn't accentuate his character either. He needs to man up and resign.

  • Tekakaromatagi Dammam, Saudi Arabia
    Jan. 30, 2013 7:17 p.m.

    Swallow's view with the felong comment is that he is scared of getting in legal trouble. A lot of people are being honest because they want to avoid trouble. That is OK, but there is a higher level: being honest because that is the right thing to do, being honest even if it will get you into trouble.

    That would have helped Swallow a lot. Because then he would might have been doing the next thing on the honesty scale: Using the language of honesty. He would have been recorded saying, "Look, you have the right to legal representation. But at the end of the day, we need to be totally honest and transparent because that is the right thing to do even if we get into trouble."

    He missed an opportunity.

  • Twin Sister LINDON, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 5:00 p.m.

    Johnson is the biggest rat of all in this whole thing. From all that I've read about his business dealings over the past year or so, I smell a sociopathic rat--a consciousless narcissist who, if he is going to go down, is going to go down with a media frenzy in a blaze of glory with big political names attached to his own. I thought it was nothing but a circus when I saw him on the news declaring that if he were to plead guilty to the charges that he had a list of those who didn't want prosecuted; namely, his family members and John Swallow. What smoke and mirrors Johnson created to make himself look "virtuous" and at the same time cast doubt in others' minds about the ethical and legal choices of John Swallow and his own family members. It is obvious that John Swallow has made some very unwise choices and has possibly broken the law. And, Harry Reid? Hopefully, time will tell in all of this and the truth will prevail.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 3:33 p.m.

    With a majority of Republicans, there have been plenty who have fallen on their sword in the past 21 years and it won't stop, in either party in the future. What is the gain? A little lie isn't bad and no one will find out. Money does speak as evidenced by $275M being taken from people who thought they were going to make a very good deal of money themselves. Greed is a form of mismanagement and bites both hands, eventually.

    Swallow has probably more than he can swallow and he is a marked person with this happening in his first week of office. Such timing for his "friend" Johnson in his fall.

  • Hunt Spanish Fork, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 3:27 p.m.

    I did not vote for Swallow for this very reason. He has and is behaving just like his former boss Mark Shurtleff. Shurtleff was constantly performing duties outside his elected job description so why should we expect anything different from Swallows. Its time for Utahns to stop blindly voting along party line and actually take the time to research the candidates. We have got to shake up the "good ol boys" club and bring sanity back into the equation when it comes to our elected officials. We can only hope that they will then get the message. Only then will they stop acting like they live under a different set of elitist rules than the rest of us. Only then will the start acting like the Servants of the public trust they were elected to be.

  • Henry Drummond San Jose, CA
    Jan. 30, 2013 1:51 p.m.

    Why hasn't the Governor of Utah called for an independent investigation? This should be separate from any criminal investigation being done by law enforcement. Its purpose would be to present an independent evaluation of the facts to the voters. It just seems like such an obvious step for Governor to take.

  • Harley Rider Small Town, CT
    Jan. 30, 2013 1:13 p.m.

    Time to fish or cut bait. If this man was an organic milk producer , or provided organic cheeses or eggs his hide would of already been tanned and hung

    But first like all court cases - lets collect as much taxpayer monies for our friends - lawyers , judges , and all supporting cast.

    Ever wonder why a cold blooded killer can lay around for decades, filing appeal after appeal - well the real answer is some private conglomerate somewhere is collecting 70K plus a year just on his keep , all them appeals are just icing on the cake for the tax parasites

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 1:00 p.m.

    Ned, so far as I know now, Reid's involvement is only on the word of Johnson. However, I'd agree with you that if more surfaces, Reid should also step aside.

    It's becoming more and more apparent all the time that Johnson's word is worth absolutely not much.

  • LDS Liberal Farmington, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 12:10 p.m.

    All I can think is -- witness the Gadianton-ing among us.

  • dalefarr South Jordan, Utah
    Jan. 30, 2013 11:43 a.m.

    Utah's one party political system fails to discourage public official misconduct and mistakes again. I doubt we will ever learn. Oh well, John's pro-life, pro-family values and support's the state owning federal lands. Isn't that what we want if an attorney general?

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 11:27 a.m.

    AS I understand the Deseret News has already made its decision. The have requested Swallow resign in their editorial. This I believe is unfair and prejudices every other article which would seem to buttress their view.The Daily Herald also jumped at the prospect of a feeding frenzy of an elected Attorney General who at this point has done nothing criminal. He had the misfortune of associated with a major felon and this is all we really know. It is important to let this play out and then make judgments. Would any of us really like to be convicted before the evidence is presented?

  • ksampow Farr West, Utah
    Jan. 30, 2013 10:55 a.m.

    This is what happens when we elect an AG based on politics rather than professional excellence. Sean Reyes would have been much better!!!!!

  • NedGrimley Brigham City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 10:31 a.m.

    Old man: I like your idea. And it should apply to both sides.

    "When a police officer is involved in an incident, he or she is immediately placed on administrative leave until an investigation has been completed and the officer has been cleared of any wrongdoing.

    Should anything less happen when [the United States Senate majority leader] is under clouds?

    He should step aside -- on leave -- until a thorough, totally independent and non-partisan investigation has been completed.

    Then, and only then, should he return to his duties IF it is appropriate."

  • one old man Ogden, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 9:34 a.m.

    At this point the whole thing is such a confused mess that no one can even begin to figure out what is true and what is not.

    What needs to happen immediately is for John Swallow to step aside. Place himself on paid administrative leave as would happen to any police officer involved in an "incident" and let the investigation proceed.

    The investigation needs to be done by someone totally disconnected. The U.S. Attorney is a good choice.

    And, it the trail leads to Sen. Reid, then so be it. But the bottom line is that Swallow should step aside as attorney general until this has been cleared up.

  • wilson-kelly Vale, OR
    Jan. 30, 2013 9:07 a.m.

    I think it is amazing that no one feels they have done anything wrong. And in way they haven't!
    It is just business as usual. You get the 'justice' you can afford. Let's see.... you pay lots of $$ and you get protection.
    And now Johnson isn't getting what he paid for!
    Lobbiests. Is it another word for MAFIA?
    In my opinion, start at the bottom and work your way up cleaning out the riff-raff along the way.
    But I think I know how this goes per what has been seen before. The bleeding hearts will come out and plead for leniency. A few hands will get slapped, usually one guy will swing for the rest as an appearance of justice and then it is back to business as usual!
    Have fun with all that....
    And we wonder what is wrong with our country?! Amazing, simply amazing....

  • Cats Somewhere in Time, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 8:46 a.m.

    This thing sounds way overblown at this point. I can't see that Swallow was doing anything illegal. He states he can't do anything and refers him to a lobbyist. I just don't see an issue here.

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 8:27 a.m.

    From the information in this article and from the recording, Johnson did most of the talking and it sort of sounds like Johnson is in the blackmailing role. The Republican GOP Convention was the next day after the recording and it almost appears that he wanted Swallow to back out of that convention and that would make it so someone else got the ticket instead of Swallow. Timing was for a purpose as it appears Johnson doesn't ever do anything without a plan in his life of deceptions. $275M is quite a bit of money for a person in Utah. He appears to be quite adept at taking people. Swallow probably met at the doughnut house as he had plenty of public meetings at the time and it would have been an odd place for Johnson to be from St. George the day before the Convention unless he had a specific motive. Johnson appears to not say how he was dealing with Rawle. Johnson's attorney is now in the blend of wanting Johnson to meet and secretly record the conversation with Swallow. Johnson just as well have been at the convention as tactics were in the Congressional seat.

  • CHS 85 Sandy, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 8:19 a.m.

    Where there's smoke.....

  • Ted Saint George, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 8:10 a.m.

    So let's review for a minute......A few weeks ago Jeremy was about to sign a plea bargain and go to jail for 10-14 yrs if the government would hold to their part of the bargain. When he realized that they were not going to live up to the deal, he let loose with all the info that he had been holding because of the deal that was offered. Because of this event, I tend to believe more of what Jeremy is saying rather than the elected officials. Eventually it will all come out in the open and "hopefully" we will know the truth. (if that's possible anymore)

  • NedGrimley Brigham City, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 7:19 a.m.

    You have to admit, after all the hand wringing and name calling regarding this whole issue, there's not much being said by the hand wringers now that Reid is possibly implicated. At least as far as he is concerned.

  • Lermentov PROVO, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 6:49 a.m.

    Moonlighting on the side in an area with potential conflicts when one has a primary government responsibility shows terribly poor judgment (and indicates a hyper-pecuniary nature). He should resign.

  • cjb Bountiful, UT
    Jan. 30, 2013 6:42 a.m.

    How is it that a Jeremy Johnson type person can slime a person and anybody believes it?

    Jan. 30, 2013 5:18 a.m.

    Hmmm....Johnson who is indicted for fraud gave money to a Republican in the Utah Attorney General Office to bribe Democrat Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid who had put many criminals behind bars in Las Vegas for fraud and bribery and also blame John Swallow who is now Utah Attorney General.

    I did not vote for John Swallow, but believe he was not trying to bribe Harry Reid as the indicted Johnson now claims.

  • BYR Woods Cross, UT
    Jan. 29, 2013 9:21 p.m.

    Let's just have the recall election and be done with it.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    Jan. 29, 2013 8:48 p.m.

    I am not trying to hang this around Mr. Swallow's neck. I only want to know the facts.
    But I am very troubled by this: "At the end of the day, I felt the FTC was screwing you. I wanted to help you with that. I knew I couldn't do it myself, so I lined you up with Richard who I thought could help you,". It was wrong for Mr. Swallow to assist in dealing with the FTC investigation while employed by the Utah Attorney General's Office. He appears to recognize that when he says he couldn't do it himself so he lined Johnson up with Mr. Rawle. If it was wrong for Mr. Swallow to do it directly, it was also wrong for him to do it indirectly.
    Also, why wasn't Mr. Swallow or the AG's office assisting the FTC? From the description of Johnson's activities, the Attorney General should have been investigating the company, not helping it wriggle out of its responsibility. I am concerned about an Attorney General who could not see that there might be problems with Johnson's business.

    Jan. 29, 2013 8:45 p.m.

    @ lost :

    And how do you know where Swallow was? Was you there when all this went down? Do you know more that the people writeing this story? Maybe you need to talk to the investigaters in order clear this mess up.

  • Agustis Sugar City, ID
    Jan. 29, 2013 8:38 p.m.

    Swallow says he understood it would be used by his friend, Richard Rawle, to hire federal lobbyists on Johnson's behalf.

    What were the federal lobbyists supposed to do? At the very least this reveals the corruption that is rampant in our government. Utah is no different. They are all for sale. Some just get caught.

  • InnocenceLost West Jordan, UT
    Jan. 29, 2013 8:22 p.m.

    Ok - So the story starts with this....Reid has disavowed any knowledge or involvement of Johnson's case.
    “The allegations of bribery by Mr. Johnson, a man with a background of fraud, deception and corruption, are absurd and utterly false. Bribery is a crime for which Sen. Reid has personally put people behind bars. Sen. Reid will not have his integrity questioned by a man of Mr. Johnson's low record and character, and his outrageous allegations will not go unanswered. Clearly, a desperate man is making things up," according to Reid spokeswoman Kristen Orthman.

    So why in the WORLD would we believe anything Jeremy Johnson has to say? And Why is it that people are letting Reid skip out on this controversy and trying to hang this around the neck of John Swallow who wasn't even at the meeting?!