Utah Attorney General John Swallow

Utah Attorney General John Swallow

Recent developments have not been good for the Utah Attorney General, John Swallow. As a news story this month says:

“The U.S. Department of Justice Public Integrity Section is investigating Swallow, as are the Salt Lake County district attorney and the Davis County attorney, both related to his dealings with indicted and imprisoned Utah businessmen.”

And on July 3, the Utah House of Representatives made “an unprecedented move” by creating a special committee to investigate the elected official.

As the Deseret News reports, “A nine-member panel with subpoena power and the ability to interview witnesses now has the authority to launch an investigation into embattled Attorney General John Swallow.”

That panel needs a Special Counsel. That’s where you may come in.

Here is the opening language from the Utah Legislature’s RFP, indicating its search for the counsel has begun:

“Utah’s Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel has issued a Request For Proposals seeking an individual, a group of individuals, or a firm to provide legal services to a Special Investigative Committee, created by the Utah House of Representatives, to investigate and make findings in relation to allegations of misconduct made against Utah’s attorney general, John Swallow.”

Utah Office of Legislative Research and General CounselThe 22-page RFP may be viewed here.

The RFP response deadline is July 25.

Be sure to jump to the last attachment, which is a letter explaining the process. It is signed by John Fellows, general counsel for the Utah Legislature.

After the long RFP, his to-the-point letter is appreciated. Here is part of what Fellows says:

“As general counsel for the Legislature … I seek a person to collaborate with me in staffing and advising the committee chair and its members. I intend that the person hired will undertake significant responsibility for planning, supervising, and presenting the investigative work of the committee. Participation in, or assistance with, litigation may also be required—if necessary—to enforce and defend the actions of the Committee, the Utah House, or the Legislature.”

“Fundamentally, I am looking for someone who has experience in complex civil or criminal investigations and has experience marshaling and presenting evidence in a narrative fashion to a judge, jury, or committee. That person should have, or hire, a group of attorneys or support staff to help accomplish the assignment.”

“The person selected, and any support staff, should also have good political instincts and be able to work diplomatically with legislators.”

Interested? The official RFP contact is:

Thomas R. Vaughn

Associate General Counsel

Office of Legislative Research & General Counsel

Utah State Capitol Complex

House Building, Suite W210

P.O. Box 145210

Salt Lake City, Utah 84114-5210

Inquiries go to tomvaughn@le.utah.gov

I’ve got to add, based on the past few years in Arizona, I’m thinking there may be some good special counsel candidates here.

I base that on the number of comments sent my way from lawyers who were armchair-litigating the Andrew Thomas hearings. Many days, I would get suggestions from lawyers who had watched the previous day’s proceedings. They would recommend—to me—alternative strategies the prosecutor could adopt.

Always, I would recommend that the attorneys contact the prosecutor if they have an idea (I’m sure he would have loved that). Of course, Thomas was disbarred, so special counsel John Gleason must have been doing something right.

So here’s another high-level opportunity to get to the bottom of a brouhaha. Have at it. And if you get the job, please keep calling me (really!); I appreciate the insights.

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