Quantcast
Get breaking news alerts via email

Click here to manage your alerts
Impeach John Swallow? The buzz is building in Utah House
Scandal » Republican House members to discuss their options at June caucus meeting.
First Published May 30 2013 05:07 pm • Last Updated Dec 07 2013 11:32 pm

Republican House members have set aside their entire caucus meeting in June to discuss options for responding to the scandal engulfing Attorney General John Swallow.

"It’s my responsibility to let our caucus know that, as a leadership team, we are not ignoring what may or may not happen," said House Majority Leader Brad Dee, R-Ogden. "We’re not ignoring the situation."

At a glance

Online Find more of The Tribune’s coverage

Read past stories on the scandal engulfing Attorney General John Swallow. › sltrib.com

Join the Discussion
Post a Comment

Meantime, the Swallow chatter among House members appears to be growing, with an informal survey of some representatives aimed at gauging the chamber’s willingness to move ahead with impeachment of the Republican attorney general.

Rep. Dan McCay, R-Riverton, was one of those calling colleagues to take the temperature of the House.

"We spoke informally to several members in the body. Everyone is concerned and wants to do the right thing for the state, and everyone is taking this issue very seriously," he said. "This is not something we’re going to approach haphazardly."

McCay said he shared the information he gathered with House Speaker Becky Lockhart, R-Provo.

"The information is valuable to leadership," he said, "to know where the body is on this issue."

Rep. Mike Kennedy, R-Alpine, received one of the calls asking if he would support impeaching Swallow. Kennedy said he was still gathering information and planned to wait and see how the process unfolds.

"I’d prefer a natural unfolding," he said, "rather than people like me or others trying to get a certain outcome."

But the calls point to a behind-the-scenes push within the House to more assertively address the ballooning scandal.


story continues below
story continues below

Impeachment proceedings, if it comes to that, would begin with a resolution filed in the House, an investigation and a vote to impeach. The stage then would shift to the Senate, which would hold a trial and vote on punishment. It would take a two-thirds vote in both chambers to act.

Dee said House leaders are aware the calls are being made, but "not obviously encouraging that."

"I would again prefer that we gather information," he said, "and we don’t have our minds made up on any of these issues before we even hear the facts."

Dee said members are also fielding questions from constituents about Swallow and that it makes sense, just in case, for them to discuss the impeachment process or other options.

He doubts the Republican caucus will take a position one way or the other at the June 19 caucus meeting. Most of the gathering will likely be open to the public, he said, but the end may be closed to discuss issues unrelated to Swallow.

"This is uncharted territory for all of us," Dee, Lockhart and their fellow House leaders wrote in an email to GOP members Wednesday evening. "We owe it to our constituents to approach this with as much information as possible, and with an open mind."

Last week, Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield, became the first legislator from either party to call for Swallow’s resignation. Rep. Jeremy Peterson, R-Ogden, said that he believes Swallow should take a leave of absence until the federal and state investigation is completed.

Swallow’s spokesman, Paul Murphy, said last week that resignation is off the table and urged lawmakers to wait before acting.

"The attorney general has not broken any laws and has no plans to resign," Murphy said. "We would hope these representatives would put their faith in the justice system instead of a trial by the media."

Next Page >


Copyright 2014 The Salt Lake Tribune. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Top Reader Comments Read All Comments Post a Comment
Click here to read all comments   Click here to post a comment


About Reader Comments


Reader comments on sltrib.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Salt Lake Tribune. We will delete comments containing obscenities, personal attacks and inappropriate or offensive remarks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. If you see an objectionable comment, please alert us by clicking the arrow on the upper right side of the comment and selecting "Flag comment as inappropriate". If you've recently registered with Disqus or aren't seeing your comments immediately, you may need to verify your email address. To do so, visit disqus.com/account.
See more about comments here.
Staying Connected
Videos
Jobs
Contests and Promotions
  • Search Obituaries
  • Place an Obituary

  • Search Cars
  • Search Homes
  • Search Jobs
  • Search Marketplace
  • Search Legal Notices

  • Other Services
  • Advertise With Us
  • Subscribe to the Newspaper
  • Login to the Electronic Edition
  • Frequently Asked Questions
  • Contact a newsroom staff member
  • Access the Trib Archives
  • Privacy Policy
  • Missing your paper? Need to place your paper on vacation hold? For this and any other subscription related needs, click here or call 801.204.6100.