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Thread: Sensitive Sarah Palin ethics report kept secret, for now

  1. #1
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    Default Sensitive Sarah Palin ethics report kept secret, for now

    4 hours ago



    ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) — Sworn to secrecy, Alaska lawmakers have begun reviewing a lengthy and politically sensitive investigative report focusing on whether Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin abused her authority as governor.

    The first-term Alaska governor has been accused of firing a state commissioner to settle a family dispute. But the report is also expected to touch on whether Palin's husband meddled in state affairs and whether her administration inappropriately accessed employee medical records.

    The inquiry, approved by a legislative committee's bipartisan vote, began before Republican presidential nominee John McCain named Palin his running mate. Since then, the case has been dogged by accusations of political influence.

    The investigation focuses on her firing of Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan. Monegan says Palin and her husband pressured him to fire Mike Wooten, a state trooper involved in a nasty divorce and custody dispute with the governor's sister. When Monegan resisted, he says, he was fired.

    Palin's critics say that shows she used her office to settle family affairs.
    "When you're the governor, you leave your household hat at home and you become governor," said state Senate President Lyda Green, a Republican who has frequently clashed with Palin.

    At their meeting Friday, lawmakers planned to vote to release the estimated 300-page report and some of the 1,000 or more pages of supporting documents. The 14-member legislative panel could recommend that the case be closed, that another committee continue to investigate, or that the matter be referred to criminal investigators.

    In an effort to head off the report, McCain campaign spokesman Taylor Griffin released the campaign's own version of events. That report, which Griffin said was written by campaign staffers, says the Legislature has taken a legitimate policy dispute between a governor and one of her commissioners, and portrayed it as something inappropriate.

    "The following document will prove Walt Monegan's dismissal was a result of his insubordination and budgetary clashes with Governor Palin and her administration," campaign officials wrote. "Trooper Wooten is a separate issue."

    Monegan had not seen the closely held report Thursday night and said he did not know what to expect.

    "I just hope that the truth is figured out," Monegan said in a telephone interview Thursday. "That the governor did want me to fire him, and I chose to not. You just can't walk up to someone and say, 'I fire you.'

    He didn't do anything under my watch to result in termination."
    The report is also expected to focus on Palin's husband, Todd, who had extraordinary access to the governor's office and her top aides. Todd acknowledges calling and meeting over the course of many months with numerous senior government officials about Wooten, whom he described as a dangerous and unstable man who had threatened his family.

    One of those meetings, Monegan said, occurred in the governor's office. Green said that raised questions of impropriety and that, ultimately, the governor is responsible.

    "He shouldn't be sitting in the governor's office and making phone calls if he's going to be pushing his agenda," she said. "Everything's on her."

    Steve Branchflower, a retired prosecutor hired by the Legislature, is also investigating whether anyone in the Palin administration pressured auditors to deny Wooten's disability claim. He had claimed he hurt his back moving a body bag, but Todd Palin later said he documented and took photos of Wooten riding a snowmobile that cast suspicion on his injury.

    Republican state Rep. John Coghill, a member of the committee, said he would try to keep the discussion focused on the what legislators set out to investigate: Monegan's firing.

    "It wasn't supposed to look into the whole administration team. It was supposed to look at the governor," he said before reading the report. "This is about the integrity of the legislative process."

    Palin's attorney, Thomas Van Flein, said he had not received a copy of the report. Over the past few days, Van Flein has released affidavits and other documents that Palin's husband and aides provided to investigators. That rankled some lawmakers but Van Flein said he wanted to make sure Branchflower's report didn't take anything out of context.

    "Whenever anyone writes their own report, they're filtering their data. And if you've already drawn your conclusion, you tend to filter it in a way to support that conclusion," he said.

    Palin's allies have accused the committee of having already drawn their conclusion. They cited comments by Democratic state Sen. Hollis French, who said the investigation could provide an "October surprise" for McCain.

    The Associated Press: Sensitive Palin ethics report kept secret, for now

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    Elite Member greysfang's Avatar
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    What?! Bullshit! I was looking forward to that report today.
    FUCK YOU AND GIVE ME MY GODDAMN VENTI TWO PUMP LIGHT WHIP MOCHA YOU COCKSUCKING WHORE BEFORE I PUNCH YOU IN THE MOUTH. I just get unpleasant in my car. - Deej

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    Elite Member cmmdee's Avatar
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    This is such garbage.

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    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    This article doesn't make sense. It also doesn't mention how the report is being 'kept secret.' It isn't being presented to the investigative council until 9 am Alaska time this morning, which means it's moments away from being presented as I type. The legislative council must vote to present it. A vote that isn't mentioned in this article.

    But before the report is released, the Legislative Council must vote to do so. There is EXTREME pressure coming from very high in the Republican Party to keep this report from coming out. If this report is released to the public tomorrow, it will be because of the principled bravery of a majority of members of the Legislative Council, particularly the Republicans who will have had to stand up to their own party. And that’s where we stand.

    Countdown to Truth - Sarah Proclaims Own Innocence! Real Report Due Out Tomorrow. « Mudflats

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    Elite Member ana-mish-ana's Avatar
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    They better not whitewash this- so much for being an honest ethical reformer. I feel like we are living in an evil bizarro world.

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    Elite Member kingcap72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ana-mish-ana View Post
    They better not whitewash this- so much for being an honest ethical reformer. I feel like we are living in an evil bizarro world.
    I've got a feeling this entire thing is going be whitewashed. It'll be poor, innocent Governor Palin acted within her authority and did nothing wrong.

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    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Here's the latest info I could find:
    Troopergate hearing getting underway (Updated)

    Posted by Alaska_Politics
    Posted: October 10, 2008 - 9:15 am
    Comments (4) | Recommend (6)
    From David Hulen in Anchorage --
    The Legislative Council is gathering in Anchorage to receive its report from investigator Steve Branchflower. We're expecting the council to hear from Branchflower in a closed session, followed, at some point, with a decision whether to issue the report. We have several people there; Kyle Hopkins sent these pictures in with his iPhone.
    Update 9:20: Kyle reports they just closed the blinds on the window into meeting room and shut the door.
    Before they closed the door, Rep. Peggy Wilson asked if Sen. Kim Elton if he had enough time to digest the report.
    "I could have spent four days ..." he said.

    adn.com | Alaska Politics Blog : Troopergate hearing getting underway (Updated)

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    Elite Member Grimmlok's Avatar
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    all i want to hear is guilty or not. Just make it happen. God.
    I am from the American CIA and I have a radio in my head. I am going to kill you.

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    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Legislators meeting secretly on Troopergate

    By WESLEY LOY and SEAN COCKERHAM
    Anchorage Daily News
    Published: October 10th, 2008 10:17 AM
    Last Modified: October 10th, 2008 10:17 AM


    A legislative panel convened this morning to receive a report on the Troopergate affair and after 25 minutes went into a closed session to question investigator Steve Branchflower.

    Sen. Kim Elton, D-Juneau, chairman of the Legislative Council, gave no indication how long the secret session might last or when Branchflower's report might be made public.

    Each legislator, meeting at the Legislative Information Office in downtown Anchorage, had two big binders on the table in front of him or her - one green and a larger red one. They contain some 1,000 pages in all.

    One panel member, Rep. Peggy Wilson, R-Wrangell, said she hadn't had time to read the full report after picking up a copy Thursday night and she said she might be uncomfortable discussing it until she had.

    "I spent hours on it yesterday and didn't have time to read it all," she said.

    Elton agreed with Wilson, telling her he could have spent four days on the report himself. But Elton added that he was able in just a few hours to get the gist of Branchflower's findings and recommendations.

    Legislators, journalists and others were greeted at the elevator outside the meeting room by a group of McCain-Palin campaign volunteers who were dressed as clowns and who said, "Welcome to the kangaroo court."

    One of them tried to give state Sen. Bill Wielechowski, D-Anchorage, a balloon twisted in the shape of a kangaroo. He declined it. Wielechowski is a member of the Judiciary Committee that subpoenaed some state officials, but he's not a member of the Legislative Council.

    During the closed legislative hearing, a group of about 50 supporters of Gov. Sarah Palin stood on the sidewalk outside the legislative building. They waved signs that said "Palin Power," "Sarah's Right" and "Not Guilty," and they chanted "Go, Sarah, Go" and "Who's the best mom in the world - Sarah."

    The Legislative Council hired Branchflower in early August to investigate whether Palin or members of her administration abused their powers in pushing for the firing of a state trooper, Mike Wooten, who once was married to Palin's sister, or whether their efforts resulted in the governor's dismissal of her public safety commissioner, Walt Monegan, in July.

    There's intense nationwide interest in the investigator's findings and whether they will affect Palin's candidacy as the Republican nominee for vice president.

    Legislators meeting secretly on Troopergate: News | adn.com

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    Elite Member AllieCat's Avatar
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    Bull shit!! I want to hear guilty or not guity.

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    Elite Member panda's Avatar
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    Guilty!

  12. #12
    Elite Member lurkur's Avatar
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    Why is everything in secrets?????

  13. #13
    Elite Member Fluffy's Avatar
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    Listening to Alaska radio right now. Former legislator says that he expects it to be a marathon session. That there is fire to this smoke. That they will take their time to digest the report before they vote.

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