Utah A.G. John Swallow: 'No way to convince people I'm innocent'

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  • let's roll LEHI, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 4:21 p.m.

    @New to Utah

    "Or else" what? I'm sure the groups you reference would be glad to see Sen. Lee and the Governor out of office. Why not use this strategy against them? Why the AG?

    Mr. Swallow made his mistakes on his own. There were folks of both political parties involved in bringing those mistake to light.

    I find your assumption that the groups you reference have any effective leverage on a state legislature controlled by Mr. Swallow's party, to be a bit of a stretch. Even assuming the "or else" was a pledge to look into a legislator's past, I see no wrong there. All public servants should expect vetting and transparency.

    Finally, I consider myself an average Utahn and a Republican and I had no issue with the press handling of this matter. If anything, there was often a failure by the press to ask Mr. Swallow the hard (but obvious) questions about the allegations, instead of letting him use the press as his soapbox without challenge.

  • New to Utah PAYSON, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 12:31 p.m.

    Maryann Martindale,executive of Alliance for a Better Utah,clearly a liberal pressure group must be dancing in the street. She along with all the Democrat party partisans, Jeremy Johnson and all the other felons connected to this political witch hunt have had the opportunity to vent and taint Swallow. The dozens of conversations I've had with everyday Utahan's paints a very different picture. It is one of disgust of the media for overkill and zealousness in pursuing every allegation, insinuation or hearsay. It is clear he got bad legal advice in filling out the csampaign disclosure but this is a civil issue. Swallows enemies made it clear that the legislature better get him out of office or else and they certainly complied like cowed cattle. The truth be told there are many black eyes in this whole affair, the media,the legislature and John Swallow. It shows the relentless pursuit by liberals with unlimited money can bring down a statewide conservative office holder. Everyone should take note and be aware.

  • let's roll LEHI, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 11:30 a.m.

    I have no desire to kick the guy while he's down, but unless he's willing to forfeit his pension, I think the investigations should continue and criminal charges brought, if warranted, and if he's convicted, he'll forfeit his pension.

    I've yet to hear him demonstrate how he was functioning as AG. He seemed to care not at all that the citizens of Utah and the attorneys in the AG's office were without a functioning AG. The fact that he didn't go into the office on his last day but instead spent the day giving interviews was consistent with his behavior during his entire term. He spent much more time on his personal matters than he did serving the people of Utah.

    The public record shows he spent a lot of time lobbying investigators and speaking to the press about his personal matters rather than working as the AG. He hasn't demonstrated that he earned his pay while in office and since there's no showing that he was functioning as AG, I don't believe his time in office should allow him to vest in his pension.

  • ray vaughn Ogden, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 9:27 a.m.

    One way to help prove your innocence would be to ask the committee to continue to retrive all of the deleted emails from your electronic devices. The feeling among many people is that the committee wants to end the investigation because the deleted emails would embarass and possibly implicate other officials in criminal acts.

  • scrappy do DRAPER, UT
    Dec. 3, 2013 7:14 a.m.

    conservative republican playing the victim card?! how deliciously ironic

  • Shamal Happy Valley, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 10:08 p.m.

    DN Subscriber 2,
    I can't tell if you think he is "totally innocent" or just "imperfect".
    His inappropriate dealings are not up for debate. They happened. Hes on tape. We don't need all of the follow-on allegations and federal and state investigations to refute innocence. He should have stepped down when he lost(betrayed) the public trust and polarized the office.
    I assume that he has spent the interim drawing a six figure salary while he coordinated his state funded legal resources. Once the free ride was over and his pension assured, it came time to focus on caring for the lifestyle he's grown accustomed to.
    Shouldn't I be angry?

  • JWB Kaysville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:48 p.m.

    The problem with this man is he has lived in a marginal world of truth and that has blinded his eye for making judgments. As the Attorney General for the State of Utah, his staff knew his dealings and didn't feel comfortable about his leadership, even as the Chief Deputy Attorney General. AG Shurtleff knew that Swallow was on the edge but joined with him on some of the excursions, right and left of the center line. Politics in Chicago are similar to that meandering and means that jail time ends of in some of those politician's futures.

    Truth is truth for some and only the facts change. I am sure the $1.5 million or so, so far, have plenty of facts they have in their files. There are some that will never surface as the devices were deleted of their files. It still seems as if the State of Utah Information Technology or investigation labs including the FBIs assets could be used to the backup files that are required for those state employees.

    Forensics are what he wanted to avoid but if laws were broken by the top law dog, then there is a problem.

  • Curmudgeon Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:27 p.m.

    In a weird way, Swallow reminds me of Col. Jessop and his famous line in "A Few Good Men":

    "You can't handle the TRUTH."

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 6:04 p.m.

    @DN Subscriber 2: Why is the Justice Department probe the most important? It did not bear on the same issues as the Lieutenant Governor's investigation. The Justice Department declined to prosecute the allegations before it, but it did not weigh in on the campaign disclosure issues.

  • one vote Salt Lake City, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 5:00 p.m.

    Could go to trial and face the evidence.

  • justired Fillmore, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:49 p.m.

    May I suggest Mr. John (R. Nixon) Swallow, the applicable quote in this situation is "I'm not a crook"!

  • ca2000 West Wendover, NV
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:37 p.m.

    @DN Subscriber 2 & Straitpath--I agree with both of you wholeheartedly. As an outsider (Nevada) I have watched this closely. I used to live in Utah, and I also feel he is innocent; I, too, have been the victim of an "investigation." Innocent, but accusations totally out of my control.
    The political animal can be ravaging at times.
    I hope he can put his life back together.

  • jasonlivy Orem, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:35 p.m.

    Whether or not he is innocent seems to be based on subjectivity. Obviously Swallow believes he's innocent based on his interpretation of the law. However, others with a different perspective are viewing the facts differently.

    We all live in our own reality. John believes he is innocent no matter what the evidence shows.

    Personally I want people who have integrity and honesty to hold the highest offices of our state. John may not deserve all that has been thrown at him and his family, but I don't believe he has the level of integrity and honesty that this office demands.

    It almost seems a fantasy to think that we can have people in office who have these attributes. The federal government has systematically stripped any hope of integrity and honesty from our public officials. The state of Utah has been a beacon of hope in this regard, and John has tarnished that a bit.

    I hope the best for him and his family. May we as a state forgive him and then demand that those who hold office do so with the utmost respect for the office. It is not a right nor a privilege but a responsibility!

  • midvale guy MIDVALE, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:21 p.m.

    I would like to have this gentleman have his day in court. After spending the millions of dollars to investigate him we should have our day in court as well. he needs to pay the full penalty of the law. He also needs to have any future money denied because he has already cost us enough due to his shady dealings and questionable character. It is not a mere coincidence that he waits until after December 1 to resign and he needs to make up some lame excuse for that as well. He needs to be tried and convicted, and after that the best thing he could possibly do is leave the state as soon as possible, regardless of the outcome. This whole situation is a complete outrage and makes me so angry that it sickens me. His denials only make it worse.

  • DN Subscriber 2 SLC, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 4:05 p.m.

    When political enemies with investigative powers and unlimited resources go after an individual, NO ONE can withstand the onslaught indefinitely, even if totally innocent.

    The most telling investigation, (and which was requested by Swallow himself!) is the one conducted by the U.S. Department of Justice, and which found nothing wrong. Everything after that is just opportunistic piling on by fellow republicans who do not want to be seen as excusing "god old boy firends); or cheap political attacks by partisans from the opposition party, and also by fringe liberal advocacy groups. All, of course, goaded by the liberal media.

    Swallow may not be a perfect person, but I think he has done less harm to Utah and Utahns that his accusers and their witch hunt.

    Karma for his accusers will be sweet to observe, as their days will surely come.

  • Straitpath PROVO, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:54 p.m.

    I have been the victim of an "investigation." You will never understand how it works until it happens to you. I believe John Swallow is innocent. I also believe he would not be able to prove it.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:41 p.m.

    "I don't know how you're not aware of where you are."

    A double entendre...How he didn't know that cameras and electronic records are EVERYWHERE is beyond me.

    You won't convince us you're innocent until you can explain EXACTLY what you meant when asking if a "paper trail" existed of your use of Jensen's houseboat.
    Or until it can be reasonably explained why all your emails, tablets, phones etc disappeared at the same time. And coincidentally covered the time frame of your misdeeds, clandestine meetings, vacations, and improprieties. Geez...what bad luck, eh?

    Why Utah voted for him, essentially a business lawyer, when the democratic candidate was SO much more qualified for the job of Attorney General is also inane.

  • Mike in Sandy Sandy, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 3:34 p.m.

    An honest man has nothing to fear from the truth.
    He is not comfortable.

  • Schwa South Jordan, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:10 p.m.

    "I don't know how you're not aware of where you are."

    What does that mean?

  • Say No to BO Mapleton, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 2:05 p.m.

    Swallow has become implicated with Shurtleff in being too helpful with certain businesses in the state.
    These same businesses were willing to provide perks for the advice given by the AG office.
    This is an office culture that was fostered over the years and appeared normal, but their helpfulness was selective.
    The fact that Swallow could not see that is a problem in and of itself, especially for an AG.

    Dec. 2, 2013 1:58 p.m.

    When will the "go quietly" part start?

  • Ranch Here, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:57 p.m.

    Well John, you could have avoided the appearance of impropriety to begin with. Then there wouldn't be anything to prove your innocence about, would there?

    We don't believe you are innocent because everything points to guilty. You should have never gone to the dark side to begin with.

  • micawber Centerville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:39 p.m.

    One way to convince people he is innocent, would be to begin telling the truth. Of course his resignation was tied to his retirement vesting.

  • Shamal Happy Valley, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:29 p.m.

    I agree with Mr Swallow. He's not going to convince anyone that he's innocent.

    I'll guess that all statements given today were written back when he calculated his pension eligibility date and how long he could keep state legal resources that have kept him in his job before they'd become self pay.

    There is nothing noble nor "quiet" about what he's doing.

  • Esquire Springville, UT
    Dec. 2, 2013 1:18 p.m.

    There is a lot of information that doesn't look good for this "victim."