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Sutherland Institute to Attorney General John Swallow: Resign

Published June 5, 2013 10:35 am

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2013, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

A leading Utah conservative think tank called Tuesday for Attorney General John Swallow to resign, saying he should put the integrity of his office before his self-interest.

"John Swallow is the chief law enforcement officer in Utah and precisely because I believe that he strives to be a man of integrity, he should step down," Paul Mero, president of the Sutherland Institute, posted on the group's website.

Mero, who said he considers Swallow a friend and a competent attorney, argued the attorney general should be presumed innocent until proven guilty. But he added there is enough evidence in various allegations to suggest "something is wrong in the Swallow case" even if it is poor judgment.

"A person of integrity holding public office would put that office before himself," Mero wrote. "... The point about integrity isn't about function as much as it is about the confidence that citizens have in the people they elect — especially the person they elect to be the state's top cop."

State Rep. Paul Ray, R-Clearfield, also has called on Swallow to step down. State Rep. Spencer Cox, R-Nephi, has said many legislators share that feeling and that the chamber should seriously consider Swallow's impeachment. Rep. Jeremy Peterson, R-Ogden, has said he believes Swallow should take a leave of absence pending the outcome of a federal and state investigation.

Swallow's spokesman has said the attorney general hasn't broken any laws and has no plans to resign.