SALT LAKE CITY, Utah (ABC 4 UTAH)- Wednesday night we saw our first glimpse of all seven candidate vying for the attorney general seat. Earlier this month, former Attorney General John Swallow resigned amid speculations of wrongdoing and ongoing investigations. Wednesday night, the seven republican candidates gathered for a public debate.
The debate wrapped up after each candidate focused on their background and his they would change the public perception of the AG's office.
One of seven candidates will be the next Utah attorney general. All say they'll repair the damage done by John Swallow.
"Anyone that I would find or discover after the fact had used their position as an attorney for the state to withhold evidence would also be subject to immediate termination," said candidate Michael Wilkins.
Many of the 182 central committee members couldn't make it to the debate, so they watched it on the live stream. They still asked questions like how would these candidates clean up the AG's office.
"I've already called for records. Those reviews are underway. What needs to be looked at carefully are how we access the health of the organization'" said Brian Tarbet.
"In addition to the audit, I would meet with every single person in the office. I would have them resign and then reapply for their positions," said Candidate Sean Reyes.
"I would first talk to the men and the women in the trenches. You'd be surprised now people actually doing their job in the office don't get a say," said candidate Scott Burns.
"An internal review, the internal policies to make sure campaign contributions are never inappropriately solicited again. I would support campaign finance reform," said candidate Robert Smith.
But the biggest battle for them may be to restore the public's trust.
"A statement on the website and update detailed about our cases. What cases are going on what subject matters who long they've been going on so the public can become more familiar," said candidate Michelle Mumford.
They were even asked about the Defense of Marriage Act and the current battle over Utah's amendment three.
"Even if we see a law that's passed we have a duty to take a constitutional stand that that law should not be in place," said candidate Bret Rawson.
The 182 Republican central committee members will meet this Saturday to vote for the next attorney general. They will present the governor with three recommendations. Governor Herbert will then select one person.
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