A city councilman walks into a bar…
…actually, he was walking out of a bar and apparently he was very drunk. So much so that he backed into another vehicle without even realizing it and drove home. Later confronted by police for leaving the scene of an accident, the councilman tried to use his position of authority to get out of trouble.
Although this seems like it could be the beginning of a great joke, it isn’t.
On January 8, 2014, West Jordan City Council member Jeff Haaga took an oath of office to “support, obey, and defend the Constitution of the United States and the constitution of the state of Utah.” On July 19, 2016, Haaga broke that oath of office by driving while intoxicated, leaving the scene of an accident, and then claiming he was above the law.
We at Alliance for a Better Utah immediately called for Haaga to resign from office. No one is above the law, especially our elected leaders. Those who have the responsibility of making our laws should be held to an even higher standard of following the law. Once he broke that oath, Haaga violated the duty he had to his constituents and broke their trust. We invited residents of West Jordan to join us in calling on Haaga to resign as well.
Unfortunately, our calls have fallen on deaf ears. Jeff Haaga still has not resigned.
To add insult to injury, the West Jordan City Council failed to censure Councilman Jeff Haaga. Better Utah’s Policy and Advocacy Counsel, Chase Thomas, attended a West Jordan council meeting held on August 10, to deliver our petition to the city clerk. Over 200 Utahns signed the petition – more than half of them West Jordan residents – which called for Haaga’s resignation following his little incident.
The council’s decision to not censure Councilman Haaga sends the wrong message to residents of West Jordan. At the council meeting, many of Haaga’s constituents expressed outrage with his actions, even joining the call for his resignation. Haaga did not even bother to show up — his empty chair serving as a continuous reminder throughout the meeting of what he had done. The council’s failure to express disapproval with Haaga’s actions completely ignores the wishes of those constituents. Haaga broke his oath of office and should be held accountable.
In light of the city council’s failure to act, we renew our call on Jeff Haaga to immediately resign from office.
-Chase Thomas & Madison Hayes