Palin Cleared in Second Troopergate Report
The Alaska Personnel Board released a report last night clearing Sarah Palin of charges of wrongdoing in the so-called Troopergate matter.
A new report just released — hours before the polls open on Election Day — exonerates Gov. Sarah Palin in the Troopergate controversy.
The state Personnel Board-sanctioned investigation is the second into whether Palin violated state ethics law in firing her public safety commissioner, and it contradicts the earlier findings by a special counsel hired by the state Legislature.
Both investigations found that Palin was within her rights to fire Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan.
But the new report says the Legislature’s investigator was wrong to conclude that Palin abused her power by allowing aides and her husband, Todd, to pressure Monegan and others to dismiss her ex-brother-in-law, Trooper Mike Wooten. Palin was accused of firing Monegan after Wooten stayed on the job.
- There is no cause to believe Palin violated the state ethics law in deciding to dismiss Monegan as public safety commissioner.
- There is no cause to believe Palin violated the state ethics law in connection with Wooten.
- There is no cause to believe any other state official violated the ethics act.
- There’s no basis to conduct a hearing to “address reputational harm,” as requested by Monegan.
- The state needs to address the issue of using private e-mails for government work and to examine how records are kept in the governor’s office. Palin used her Yahoo e-mail account for state business until it was hacked.
I know very little about Alaska personnel law or whether an investigation by the Personnel Board trumps one by the state legislature. Having reported on the first, however, I wanted to do the same for the second.
What I do know about the case, however, is that Wooten probably deserved to be fired and that, whether it’s legal or even ethical, it’s unseemly for a state governor — let alone the husband of said governor — to use the power of her office to pursue personal grievances.