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jAZ
08-31-2008, 04:15 PM
TPM and John Marshall had actaully investigated this story long before she becamse the VP pick. They've been digging into all of the Alaska storylines. This was just one of many. Good read.

Here is the highlevel overview quoted from the end of the article:

So let's put this all together.

We rely on elected officials not to use the power of their office to pursue personal agendas or vendettas. It's called an abuse of power. There is ample evidence that Palin used her power as governor to get her ex-brother-in-law fired. When his boss refused to fire him, she fired his boss. She first denied Monegan's claims of pressure to fire Wooten and then had to amend her story when evidence proved otherwise. The available evidence now suggests that she 1) tried to have an ex-relative fired from his job for personal reasons, something that was clearly inappropriate, and perhaps illegal, though possibly understandable in human terms, 2) fired a state official for not himself acting inappropriately by firing the relative, 3) lied to the public about what happened and 4) continues to lie about what happened.

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/211769.php

08.31.08 -- 11:00AM // link | recommend (267)

Getting Real About Palin
I've noticed some people who should know better claiming that bringing up Gov. Palin's troopergate scandal is tantamount to making a victim of or defending her slimeball ex-brother-in-law who allegedly once used a taser on his stepson.

That's awfully foolish. So I thought I'd put together a post explaining why.

The person in question is state trooper Mike Wooten -- Palin's ex-brother-in-law who's embroiled in a bitter custody and divorce battle with Palin's sister. Back in the second week of August, well before Palin became a national political figure, TPMMuckraker was reporting on this story. And as part of the reporting we tried to get a handle on just how bad a guy Wooten was. Most people who are familiar with the ugliness that often spills out of custody and divorce cases know to take accusations arising out of the course of them with a grain of salt unless you know a lot about the people involved. And if you look closely at the case there are numerous reasons to question the picture drawn by the Palin family. Regardless, we proceeded on the assumption that Wooten really was a rotten guy because the truth is that it wasn't relevant to the investigation of Palin.

Let's review what happened.

The Palin family had a feud with Wooten prior to her becoming governor. They put together a list of 14 accusations which they took to the state police to investigate -- a list that ranged from the quite serious to the truly absurd. The state police did an investigation, decided that 5 of the charges had some merit and suspended Wooten for ten days -- a suspension later reduced to five days. The Palin's weren't satisfied but there wasn't much they could do.

When Palin became governor they went for another bite at the apple. Palin, her husband and several members of her staff began pressuring Public Safety Commissioner, Walt Monegan -- a respected former Chief of the Anchorage police department -- to can Wooten. Monegan resisted, arguing that the official process regarding Wooten was closed. And there was nothing more that could be done. In fact, during one of the conversations in which Palin's husband Todd was putting on the squeeze, Monegan told Todd Palin, "You can't head hunt like this. What you need to do is back off, because if the trooper does make a mistake, and it is a terminable offense, it can look like political interference."

Eventually, Palin got fed up and fired Monegan from his job. (Palin claims, not credibly, that she fired Monegan over general differences in law enforcement priorities.) This is an important point. Wooten never got fired. To the best of my knowledge, he's is still on the job. The central bad act was firing the state's top police official because he refused to bend to political pressure from the governor and her family to fire a public employee against whom the governor was pursuing a vendetta -- whether the vendetta was justified or not.

Soon after this, questions were raised in the state about Monegan's firing and he eventually came forward and said he believed he'd been fired for not giving in to pressure to fire Wooten.

After Monegan made his accusations, Palin insisted there was no truth whatsoever to his claims. Nonetheless, a bipartisan committee of the state legislature approved an investigation. In response, Palin asked the Attorney General to start his own investigation which many in the state interpreted as an effort to either keep tabs on or tamper with the legislature's investigation. Again, very questionable judgment in someone who aspires to be first in line to the presidency.

The Attorney General's investigation quickly turned up evidence that Palin's initial denials were false. Multiple members of her staff had raised Wooten's employment with Monegan. Indeed, the state police had a recording of one of her deputies pushing Monegan to fire Wooten. That evidence forced Palin to change her story. Palin said that this was the first she'd heard of it and insisted the deputy wasn't acting at her behest, even though the trascript of the recorded call clearly suggested that he was. (Hear the audio here.)

Just yesterday, Monegan gave an interview to the Washington Post in which he said that not only Palin's aides, but Palin's husband and Palin herself had repeatedly raised the Wooten issue with him and pressured him to fire him. And now he says he has emails that Palin sent him about the matter. (In an interesting sidelight, that may end up telling us a lot, Monegan says no one from the McCain campaign ever contacted him in the vetting process.)

The investigator appointed by the state legislature began trying to arrange a time to depose Gov. Palin last week -- in other words, in the final days before her selection.

So let's put this all together.

We rely on elected officials not to use the power of their office to pursue personal agendas or vendettas. It's called an abuse of power. There is ample evidence that Palin used her power as governor to get her ex-brother-in-law fired. When his boss refused to fire him, she fired his boss. She first denied Monegan's claims of pressure to fire Wooten and then had to amend her story when evidence proved otherwise. The available evidence now suggests that she 1) tried to have an ex-relative fired from his job for personal reasons, something that was clearly inappropriate, and perhaps illegal, though possibly understandable in human terms, 2) fired a state official for not himself acting inappropriately by firing the relative, 3) lied to the public about what happened and 4) continues to lie about what happened.

These are, to put it mildly, not the traits or temperament you want in someone who could hold the executive power of the federal government.

--Josh Marshall

***SPRAYER
08-31-2008, 08:32 PM
Mercy post.

'Hamas' Jenkins
08-31-2008, 09:55 PM
I'm really beginning to wonder if this woman is still gonna be his VP pick in another two weeks.

SBK
08-31-2008, 10:05 PM
I'm really beginning to wonder if this woman is still gonna be his VP pick in another two weeks.

She'll still be the VP 3 years from now. :D

keg in kc
08-31-2008, 10:06 PM
She'll still be the VP 3 years from now.If they win, she'll probably be president 3 years from now.

BucEyedPea
08-31-2008, 11:04 PM
I didn't read that whole thing but I heard the guy was guilty of domestic violence and that he was offered another position or something like that but there are two sides to the story.

SBK
08-31-2008, 11:07 PM
If they win, she'll probably be president 3 years from now.

You say that like it's a bad thing.....:evil:

alnorth
08-31-2008, 11:31 PM
I actually heard this being briefly discussed on CNN, and the anchors and political commentators basically agreed the scandal was not going to go anywhere. Why? It doesnt have anything to do with whether this was true or not, but another very ugly detail that these stories in the OP conveniently leave out.

This isnt a case of a little dispute or nasty disagreement here. The trooper in question admitted to tasering his 10-yr old stepson, and his supervisor decided that the appropriate punishment was a written warning, which was pretty outrageous regardless of who was related to who. Most of us probably would have beat the living crap out of the guy.

Ari Chi3fs
08-31-2008, 11:32 PM
SBK has become WAY uncool recently.

Stinger
08-31-2008, 11:36 PM
I'm really beginning to wonder if this woman is still gonna be his VP pick in another two weeks.


Well once Cheney is gone in 2 weeks can she take over for him until the election??

alnorth
08-31-2008, 11:38 PM
honestly, this is why you arent seeing the democrats or obama's campaign bring this up. I really hope they are stupid enough to talk about it, because if this becomes an issue it will help McCain and Palin when all the facts are revealed. The voters are going to nod their heads and think "Good! I would have fired everyone involved with protecting him too!"

jAZ
09-01-2008, 01:38 AM
I didn't read that whole thing but I heard the guy was guilty of domestic violence and that he was offered another position or something like that but there are two sides to the story.

Rather than admit to not reading it and trying to tell us your version... maybe reading it is worth it.

It's not that long and Josh Marshall is ahead of the investigative curve on this person.

jAZ
09-01-2008, 01:42 AM
...another very ugly detail that these stories in the OP conveniently leave out.

This isnt a case of a little dispute or nasty disagreement here. The trooper in question admitted to tasering his 10-yr old stepson...
What are you talking about?
http://talkingpointsmemo.com/archives/211769.php

08.31.08 -- 11:00AM // link | recommend (267)

Getting Real About Palin
I've noticed some people who should know better claiming that bringing up Gov. Palin's troopergate scandal is tantamount to making a victim of or defending her slimeball ex-brother-in-law who allegedly once used a taser on his stepson.

alnorth
09-01-2008, 02:28 AM
What are you talking about?

Ahh, missed that. It was a pretty big wall of text. Anyway, its not really "allegedly" when the guy admits it.

There really is no scandal here because the guy who was fired served strictly at the pleasure of the governor. She could have given no reason whatsoever. The fact that she had a very damned good reason to fire him just makes this a plus rather than a non-issue.

jAZ
09-01-2008, 02:37 AM
Ahh, missed that. It was a pretty big wall of text. Anyway, its not really "allegedly" when the guy admits it.

There really is no scandal here because the guy who was fired served strictly at the pleasure of the governor. She could have given no reason whatsoever. The fact that she had a very damned good reason to fire him just makes this a plus rather than a non-issue.
Hard to know if any crimes were committed until it's actaully been investigated.

banyon
09-01-2008, 05:39 PM
Palin dummied up.

Palin retains lawyer for 'Troopergate' probe

http://blogs.usatoday.com/ondeadline/2008/09/palin-retains-l.html

More not-so-good news today regarding Sen. John McCain's running mate.

Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has hired a lawyer to defend her in the so-called Troopergate investigation. The state's Legislature is looking into whether Palin fired former public safety commissioner Walter Monegan because he refused to sack a state trooper her former brother-in-law, who had divorced Palin's sister.

Three weeks ago the governor had to backtrack from weeks of denials that she or anyone from her office had pressured Monegan to fire Trooper Michael Wooten. She admitted Aug. 13th that a member of her administration had made calls that could be perceived as pressure.

KTVA and the Anchorage Daily News have background on the case. Here's the Daily News' archive of Troopergate articles.