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

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

[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/10/10/art.palin03.gi.jpg caption="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. Kel in Auburn, AL

    ..And the truth comes out.

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  2. Nicole

    (In my sarcastic voice) Wow! That's shocking! Never saw that one coming!

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  3. truth please

    One more nail in the coffin of Gov. Morals and another thing. How did First Dude get so much power and control in her office, where he was able to call officials and look at personnel records. Who is the real Gov? Can you go to your husband or wife's job and do what he was able to do? Think about it?

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  4. candis


    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  5. kirsten

    just because you didn't break the law, it doesn't make it right. she's a mini cheney, hell, she's a super cheney.

    but i guess since they only care about what people you know do and not their own actions this isn't a big deal to them.

    great article called make believe maverick, you should google it.

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  6. Donna

    Whether legal or not, this was evidence that Palin is vindictive and puts her personal likes/dislikes into play as a public official. She is not competent to be in a position to govern.

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  7. Justin Hussein - NC

    sure she didn't break any laws... and I've got a bridge to sell you in Alaska. Ah well, I was so afraid when Palin was picked but now it seems she's been nothing but a blessing for Obama. Her negativity and abuse of power can only further corrupt Washington and speaks to the heart of McCain's poor Judgment.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  8. Anonymous


    October 10, 2008 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  9. chuckt1169469

    how can you abuse your power but break no laws....isn't abusing your power breaking a law?

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  10. JT

    I knew that like I knew 60 sec was a minute.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  11. NJP

    Spiro Agnew lite

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  12. Alex

    If Palin abused her power at the governor's level, can you imagine what she would do as president????

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  13. Nicole in Ohio

    This woman is absolutely pathetic! The fact that she was selected by McCain to be his running mate shows his poor judgment. She's not fit to hold the second most powerful position in the U.S. government. Sarah, please do everyone a favor and go back to Alaska. YOU ARE A DISGRACE.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  14. the dude

    on nov. fifth, its back to alaska...her fifteen minutes of fame over forever.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  15. New Day

    Abuse of power, abuse of power... ...hmmmmmmm, who else do I know that abused his power for 8 years??? Can we stop electing idiots and people who abuse the power of their office?

    I dont know if Obama is an elitist but, isnt elite what we want?

    If we find a definitive position on bin Laden, who do you want going in to get him, an elite delta force unit or the keystone cops?

    Trust me, elite is good.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  16. mrwolf

    It's ok Sarah. George Bush has not broken any laws while corrupting the Constitution and ignoring Human Rights either. It shows some promise for the future... right!

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  17. Doreen

    I can"t wait to hear how the republicans defend this one.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  18. Elizabeth - TEXAS - Former Republican

    Palin has got to be making Mccain so proud! What was he thinking? Now what is he going to do with her now? Palin can't be trusted. Palin still has 2 more charges about ethics against her. We have the economy crisis, stock market crisis, job crisis, wars in several countries and Sarah Palin!

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  19. Lee in LaGrange, Ga

    Yawn....boring....dull. This is a big bunch of nothing.

    Now lets get a commission to look at obama's ties to ACORN, etc.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  20. William E. Trapnell

    So Sarah Palin is another of those elected officials holding the highest office in Alaska and she abused her power as Governor?
    Haven't we had enough of that sort of abuse of power for eight years under the Bush Administration? When we all know that John McCain will continue such abuse the McSame way, I think all ears better perk up and stop this fiasco in its tracks.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  21. S. Boatman


    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  22. Paul, San Jose

    This is good stuff, folks!! Now who is paling around with criminals?
    Shame on you McCain to bring this nuts to your ticket!!

    Go Obama/ Biden 08, 12

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  23. Texas Vet

    Most Americans consider Alaska a pristine wilderness, the last frontier, Alaskans living an idyllic Pioneer life staunchly protecting their environment. In fact Alaska and Alaskans have an abysmal record protecting their environment from pollution and its animals from extinction. Exactly like American Pioneers have done throughout our History

    Alaska also has thousands of hazardous waste sites including active and formerly used defense sites (FUDs), National Priority List (NPL) or Superfund Sites, active and abandoned mine sites, solid and industrial waste landfills. Yes, there is Nuclear Waste already buried in unprotected sites in Alaska.

    Governor Palin, whose husband works for BP, has a dismal record on pollution and catering to special interests. Unbelievable as this may sound, her policies and statements actually puts her to the right of the Bush Administration.

    She believes Global Warming is a farce and supports the development of the Pebble Mine which threatens the entire Bristol Bay ecosystem which contains the largest sockeye salmon run in the world. The mine would pollute an unprecedented number of rivers, lakes, and bays. Pebble Mine's potential for pollution would make the Exxon Valdez oil spill look like a small grease stain.

    She is suing the Federal Government to revoke the polar bears from the endangered species list. Why? Because it could restrict Oil Industry drilling sites including the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. To educate Alaskans about aerial hunting of wolves and bears, $400,000 of State Tax money was used to directly influence the outcome of Proposition 2 which would have limited aerial shooting of predators. Proposition two was voted down on 8/26/2008.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  24. Lucy

    Those who will vote for Obama or for McCain because of race have already declared their support. The Bradley effect will be minimal this time around. We are living in a different world where Black respectable and accepted leaders are prevalent in all facets of life. Our young people, voters in their 20s and 30s are used to seeing Black leaders, role models, entertainers, etc in vital roles. Obama is not new to them. They have a different view of life than our parents and grandparents.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
  25. JEFF

    She is another Dick Cheney.But Dick is ALOT smarter than palin suprisingry McCain says CHENEY will go down as the worst V.P. i wonder what McCain thinks of Sarah as V.P.

    October 10, 2008 08:47 pm at 8:47 pm |
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