October 10th, 2008
08:21 PM ET
6 years ago

Report: Palin abused power, violated ethics code in trooper case

Report: Palin ‘abused her power’
Report: Palin ‘abused her power’

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (CNN) – Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin abused her power as Alaska's governor and a violated state ethics law by trying to get her ex-brother-in-law fired from the state police, a state investigator's report concluded Friday.

"Governor Palin knowingly permitted a situation to continue where impermissible pressure was placed on several subordinates in order to advance a personal agenda," the report states.

View the full report (pdf)

Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan's refusal to fire State Trooper Mike Wooten from the state police force was "likely a contributing factor" to Monegan's July dismissal, but Palin had the authority as governor to sack him, the report by former Anchorage prosecutor Stephen Branchflower states. However, it states that her efforts to get Wooten fired broke a state ethics law that bars public officials from pursuing personal interest through official action.

Monegan has said he was fired in July after refusing pressure to sack Wooten, who had gone through an acrimonious divorce and custody battle with Palin's sister. Palin and her husband, Todd, have consistently denied any wrongdoing, describing Wooten as a "rogue trooper" who had threatened their family - allegations Branchflower discounted.

"I conclude that such claims of fear were not bona fide and were offered to provide cover for the Palins' real motivation: to get Trooper Wooten fired for personal family reasons," Branchflower wrote.

Full story


Filed under: Sarah Palin
soundoff (1,073 Responses)
  1. AL+

    WHOOOOO IS SARAH PALIN............. SOUNDS FAMILIAR BIMBO

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  2. jp

    How about a correction CNN as follows:

    A legislative committee investigating Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has found she unlawfully abused her authority in firing the state's public safety commissioner. The investigative report concludes that a family grudge wasn't the sole reason for firing Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan but says it likely was a contributing factor.

    emphasis on the words: unlawfully abused

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  3. Otto

    Just imagine what she'll do if she becomes VP. This will be another George Bush and Dick Cheney administration all over again, except there will be lip stick on a pig!

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  4. Rick, Tx

    What's in the dark, will come to the light!

    GAME OVER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  5. McHoover Would Destroy What's Left of America

    Fix your headline

    Every other news organization has it correct

    She DID violate Alaskan law

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  6. Anonymous

    Our governor did violate the law.

    Your statement is wrong: "Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin abused her power as Alaska’s governor in the firing of her former public safety commissioner, but violated no laws, a report for the state Legislature concluded Friday."

    It is flatly contradicted by the first finding of the investigative report:

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  7. femal voter

    Oh please. She broke no laws. Per this report, the Governor can fire her appointees at will. She doesn't need a reason to fire him. This was nothing more than a political witch hunt.

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  8. Susan

    I did not think she broke any laws. She is a good Gov. and a good mom.

    I do not know who I am voting for yet. This has been a bashing campaign.

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  9. Steven

    And I shall call her mini-Bush.

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  10. bob

    She sounds like another Bush running things as she likes instead

    of lie it should be done

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  11. Alex

    she sounds like bush...

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  12. Cheri

    WOW!! and she has the nerve to talk about Obama's values and morals.McCain and Palin are toast.

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  13. McHoover Would Destroy What's Left of America

    The report by investigator Steve Branchflower found that Palin violated the state's executive branch ethics act, which says that "each public officer holds office as a public trust, and any effort to benefit a personal or financial interest through official action is a violation of that trust."

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  14. even tempered

    Caribou Barbie is mean and vindictive. She's a political novice and way over her head, even in Alaskan politics. The real issue is McCain's judgement in choosing her – he picked a nutcase. Who is more at fault here, the nutcase or the guy who picked the nut.

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  15. Anonymous

    Since when is abusive power not breaking the law?

    October 10, 2008 08:50 pm at 8:50 pm |
  16. Kathy

    Good... because I was getting sick and tired of listening to all the fanatic Palin fans. Now you all can see what and who she is. This is nothing but the pot calling the kettle black!

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  17. Mila

    They're probably happy this came out late Friday night on another bad economics day.

    Can we have the election now and put McCain/Palin out of their misery?

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  18. Ann

    We need to run away from this ticket as fast as we can! I am sick of power hungry, arrogant and divisive people leading this country! The prospect of this woman being a heartbeat away from the presidency of a 72 year old in remission cancer patient is terrifying to say the least!

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  19. Daryl from Seattle

    Hmmmm, abuse of power? Sound familiar folks? McBush and Pain-in the @$$ should not be our next governing bodies. They're frauds.

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  20. Mac

    The truth always comes to light. Instead of her saying who's the real Barack Obama, everyone should be saying who is Sarah Palin

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  21. Amy

    America,

    Do we want a vice president who was found to abuse power? Haven't we had enough of that these past eight years with Dick Cheney? I know I have!

    Obama/Biden 2008

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  22. Dr. MAD

    We already had a President and VP that abused their power. Please don't elect two more!!!

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  23. Stew

    All hearsay. What do you expect from those who are at odds with her? Politics as usual.

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  24. gwt301

    To me, and I am an unappologetic Barack Obama supporter, this is no big deal. If it is not a crime in Alaska then it's much ado about nothing. But it does give you pause when considering how the abuse of power angle mirrors the current administration's M.O.

    Who doesn't use their political position to push their agenda?

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  25. Rose

    Some of her first actions after being elected mayor in 1996 raised possible ethical red flags: She cast the tie-breaking vote to propose a tax exemption on aircraft when her father-in-law owned one, and backed the city's repeal of all taxes a year later on planes, snow machines and other personal property. She also asked the council to consider looser rules for snow machine races. Palin and her husband, Todd, a champion racer, co-owned a snow machine store at the time.

    Palin often told the City Council of her personal involvement in such issues, but that didn't stop her from pressing them, according to minutes of council meetings.

    October 10, 2008 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
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