Stephanie Ostrowski Nov. 7, 2012, 4:57am

SALT LAKE CITY (Legal Newsline) - Utah Deputy Attorney General John Swallow is headed for a landslide win in the race to become the state's top legal officer.

Swallow led Democrat Dee Smith by more than 180,000 votes with 43 percent of precincts reporting, according to the Salt Lake Tribune. Swallow held a 64 percent to 31 percent lead.

Swallow has been involved in some of Utah's high-profile cases while he was chief deputy to resigning attorney general Mark Shurtleff and served six years in the state legislature.

Shurtleff has held the attorney general position for 12 years.

The 49-year-old Swallow has lived in Utah for the past 28 years and ran for state legislature after finished law school. He spent six years in the Utah House of Representatives and experienced two unsuccessful runs for Congress against Democratic U.S. Rep. Jim Matheson.

Although Swallow has never been a prosecutor, he has helped manage the state's largest law firm and represented state agencies, worked with the governor and the legislature and served on the Constitutional Defense Council.

Smith believed his experience as the top prosecutor in Weber County could have earned him the attorney general title.

Among top priorities for both candidates are making communities safer and protecting children from Internet crimes.

The attorney general's office has a $48 million budget with a staff of about 230 lawyers.

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