Archive for Saturday, October 25, 2008

Palin testifies in ethics dispute

October 25, 2008


— Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin testified for two hours Friday in an abuse-of-power investigation that has been a distraction to her Republican vice presidential campaign.

Palin's leadership was questioned this month in a stinging but largely toothless legislative report that found she violated state ethics laws by letting a family dispute influence her decision-making.

Palin is hoping the Alaska Personnel Board, which is running a parallel investigation, will clear her of wrongdoing. It's unclear, however, whether any conclusion will be reached before Election Day.

"I am so pleased to finally have gotten the chance to tell what really happened and get the truth out," Palin said in a statement released by her attorney. "It was the right thing to do to bring this before the Personnel Board and have a true arm's length unbiased and apolitical investigator look into this."

The board is investigating the firing of her public safety commissioner, Walter Monegan. Monegan claims he was dismissed because he refused to fire Palin's former brother-in-law, a state trooper involved in a messy divorce from Palin's sister. The controversy, known as "Troopergate," took on national significance after John McCain selected Palin as his running mate.

The legislative inquiry found that Monegan's firing was proper but the pressure to fire the trooper, Mike Wooten, was not. Griffin says Palin stands by her decision to fire Monegan and her concerns about Wooten.

Palin and her husband, Todd, say Wooten was unstable and had made threats against their family. Wooten had also used an electric stun gun on his stepson.

"I make no apologies for wanting to protect my family and wanting to publicize the injustice of a violent trooper keeping his badge," Todd Palin said in an affidavit submitted to legislative investigators.

Sarah Palin was not subpoenaed in that investigation. Friday's testimony before independent investigator Timothy Petumenos was the first time she spoke at length or under oath about the controversy. Palin began testifying around 4 p.m., McCain campaign spokesman Taylor Griffin said.


Jennifer Forth 9 years, 6 months ago

Ok Tom. Show us the leftist liberal bias in this article.

jaywalker 9 years, 6 months ago

It's toothless because, as was admitted by the top Dems in Alaska before this all started, there are no grounds for censure or even reprimand. Monegan served at the discretion of the Governor, she could have fired him for looking cross-eyed. And Wooten is an unfit Trooper, family member or not. He should not be on the force. But luckily this non-story has been able to be dragged out through crunch time.

Frank Smith 9 years, 6 months ago

Palin: "It was the right thing to do to bring this before the Personnel Board and have a true arm's length unbiased and apolitical investigator look into this."The "apolitical investigator" works for the Personnel Board, all three of whose members can be fired by her without cause. She can fire her Attorney General as well.If anything, she's shown for the past 16 years that she can be extraordinarily vindictive toward those who she feels, rightly or wrongly, have crossed her.

tangential_reasoners_anonymous 9 years, 6 months ago

Hmm... Palin tested by ethicists within six months of the election....

Kendall Simmons 9 years, 6 months ago

Tom Shewmom wrote: ""It is biased for the mere fact, where were the swarms of reporters in Chicago? Why is Obama hiding his past and getting away with every single bit of it?"To which I respond with a rousing "huh???????" What are you talking about? What past is being hidden? And just how do YOU know it's being hidden? What are you keeping from us? What insider knowledge of Barack Obama's past do you have that you're not sharing with the rest of us?I know I'd sure like to know. And I'll bet FOX would be chomping at the bit to have you appear with your factual knowledge. It is factual, right? Not just a personal opinion? Not just based on claims you've heard and read from other people who also haven't specified any insider knowledge? Right, Tom?

Frank Smith 9 years, 6 months ago

"Liberal bias" my kiester. AST Wooten, after being repeatedly bugged by his stepson, turned it to the lowest ("test") setting, attached clips to the kid (never "shot" him with it), laid him down on cushions in the living room with his mom standing there. The kid asked if he would do it again, on a higher setting, and he refused.In the case of a kid of 10 or 11, the chances that the boy could have been damaged by such a minor shock are infinitesmal. He probably would have gotten a bigger jolt by shuffling across a rug and touching a radiator.Amusement parks used to have machines to allow users to test their endurance of shocks by pulling tiller handles apart as a rheostat turned up the juice. In this age of pacemakers, I expect they're long gone, but I've never heard of one harming anyone and they delivered a pretty healthy shock.The AP story is written to make the trooper sound like some kind of monster. The nearest thing that was ever reported about him being "violent" is when he intervened when some drunk in a bar was hasseling the guy's own girl friend. No blows were traded and the trooper was off-duty when it occured.The AP reporters who wrote the article, however, are apparently trying to justify Todd's characterization of his ex-brother-in-law as "violent" by using language in their story such as "used an electric stun gun on his nephew." Three years later the Heath/Palin families complained about it. The judge hearing the child custody case admonished the families, characterizing their constant vendetta and bogus reports against the trooper as "tantamount to child abuse."The most interesting thing, perhaps, is that in the scores of stories about the relationship and divorce, the trooper never once is quoted as saying anything damaging about the Heath-Palins. So which party showed the "class" in the divorce and custody process?

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