Probe: Palin 'Abused Power' in firing trooper

Republicans say the entire investigation was a partisan witch hunt. (the Democratic legislator in charge promised "an October surprise"). Most of the Democratic members of the Committee had their picture taken at an Obama fundraiser. The idea that they (or the Republicans for that matter) could approach this matter in a bi-partisan and fair manner was ludicrous from the start.

Of course, the media is treating it as if all was on the up and up. And the "verdict" is that Palin didn't do anything illegal but acted unethically in the firing of a state trooper - an ex-brother in law who had threatened her family:

An Alaska state legislative investigator found yesterday that Gov. Sarah Palin abused executive power when she and her husband engaged in a campaign to oust her former brother-in-law from the state police force.

The 263-page report released in Anchorage also found that while Palin was well within her right to fire Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan, his dismissal came in part because he refused to remove her sister's ex-husband from the Alaska State Troopers.

Investigator Stephen Branchflower found evidence that Palin actively joined her husband, Todd, in pursuing a personal vendetta against the trooper and that she used state employees to try to settle a score in a bitter family feud.

"Governor Palin knowingly permitted a situation to continue where impermissible pressure was placed on several subordinates in order to advance a personal agenda, to wit: To get Trooper Michael Wooten fired," said the report released by a bipartisan legislative committee.

Clearly, Palin let her husband have his head in this matter and she should have realized the impropriety involved - even given the extenuating circumstances. But this is a case that should have been taken to a body outside of partisan politics, especially given the national implications. Who knows what a non-partisan investigation would have concluded? The fact that the report shows Palin clearly acted within her authority in firing Monegan - the thing that had the Democrats screaming for Palin's head - means that most of this investigation was  a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing.

There was no reason not to delay the release of this report until after the election either. Patrick Fitzgerald in Chicago has delayed the sentencing of Obama buddy Tony Rezko - partly because Rezko is singing but also because of the political considerations of bringing Rezko to the fore just days before the election. Why didn't the Alaska  Democrats in charge of the Joint Legislative Committee insist  on similar ground rules? Because they wanted the report to have a political impact, that's why.

Cheap politics aside this is not good for the McCain campaign. Once the press gets through spinning this they are going to make Palin look like Nixon. And since those extenuating circumstances regarding the trooper are never included in any MSM report of the matter, people will not have a clue as to why Palin and her husband pursued this matter so vigorously.




Republicans say the entire investigation was a partisan witch hunt. (the Democratic legislator in charge promised "an October surprise"). Most of the Democratic members of the Committee had their picture taken at an Obama fundraiser. The idea that they (or the Republicans for that matter) could approach this matter in a bi-partisan and fair manner was ludicrous from the start.

Of course, the media is treating it as if all was on the up and up. And the "verdict" is that Palin didn't do anything illegal but acted unethically in the firing of a state trooper - an ex-brother in law who had threatened her family:

An Alaska state legislative investigator found yesterday that Gov. Sarah Palin abused executive power when she and her husband engaged in a campaign to oust her former brother-in-law from the state police force.

The 263-page report released in Anchorage also found that while Palin was well within her right to fire Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan, his dismissal came in part because he refused to remove her sister's ex-husband from the Alaska State Troopers.

Investigator Stephen Branchflower found evidence that Palin actively joined her husband, Todd, in pursuing a personal vendetta against the trooper and that she used state employees to try to settle a score in a bitter family feud.

"Governor Palin knowingly permitted a situation to continue where impermissible pressure was placed on several subordinates in order to advance a personal agenda, to wit: To get Trooper Michael Wooten fired," said the report released by a bipartisan legislative committee.

Clearly, Palin let her husband have his head in this matter and she should have realized the impropriety involved - even given the extenuating circumstances. But this is a case that should have been taken to a body outside of partisan politics, especially given the national implications. Who knows what a non-partisan investigation would have concluded? The fact that the report shows Palin clearly acted within her authority in firing Monegan - the thing that had the Democrats screaming for Palin's head - means that most of this investigation was  a lot of sound and fury signifying nothing.

There was no reason not to delay the release of this report until after the election either. Patrick Fitzgerald in Chicago has delayed the sentencing of Obama buddy Tony Rezko - partly because Rezko is singing but also because of the political considerations of bringing Rezko to the fore just days before the election. Why didn't the Alaska  Democrats in charge of the Joint Legislative Committee insist  on similar ground rules? Because they wanted the report to have a political impact, that's why.

Cheap politics aside this is not good for the McCain campaign. Once the press gets through spinning this they are going to make Palin look like Nixon. And since those extenuating circumstances regarding the trooper are never included in any MSM report of the matter, people will not have a clue as to why Palin and her husband pursued this matter so vigorously.