03 October 2008

Judge Tosses Suit: Palin's Troopergate Probe Proceeds

Y'all remember Troopergate" (should that be "Troopergate '08")? It refers to allegations that Governor Sarah Palin pressured Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan to fire Palin's former brother-in-law, a State Trooper; Monegan alleges that Palin fired him when he declined to do so. Investigations into the matter had been derailed by a lawsuit filed by five Alaskan Republicans. Well, as Andrew Sullivan puts it, “the real news of the day” (well, besides that bailout vote) is that the Alaskan Troopergate investigation will go forward. "

From the AP (via Politico):

An investigator hired by Alaskan lawmakers to probe abuse-of-power allegations against Gov. Sarah Palin was free to finish his work by a deadline set for a week from Friday after a state judge dismissed a lawsuit seeking to block the probe.
[. . . .]
At first, Palin agreed to cooperate with the probe, but since being picked Aug. 29 to be Sen. John McCain's running mate, she, her family and staff have instead said the legislative investigation has been compromised by politics and that they would cooperate only with a separate investigation run by the Alaska State Personnel Board, whose members Palin can fire.

Michalski also threw out a lawsuit filed by Palin aides seeking to dismiss subpoenas compelling their testimony in the investigation. The aides had argued that the subpoenas should not have to be honored because they should not have been issued.

Todd Palin also refused to testify under subpoena, but he was not a plaintiff in the lawsuit filed by the state. His attorney, Thomas Van Flein, declined to say whether Palin would now testify, saying he had not seen the ruling to study the options.

So we can expect the investigator’s report by next 10 October. While his conclusions might clear Palin of any wrongdoing, it will certainly hang over next week’s McCain campaign events. Does the McCain camp really need another questionable week? Then again, perhaps he’ll shine at the upcoming town hall-style debate.

Update 10/6: the Alaska Daily News announces that state employees "will honor subpoenas" and testify in the Troopergate probe.

No comments: