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. rf of Los Angeles

    DOES THAT STILL SURPRISE YOU??? This woman is Dick Cheney on a lipstick and skirt

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  2. Linda, NC

    LOL that is funny... isnt abusing power breaking law?
    CNN stop trying to cover it up with soft words.. a person in high power is not allowed to abuse the power and if they do it ... it is breaking law..

    CNN Post this

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |

    Ms. Palin I feel sorry for you now. You got trown into this and you were not qualified. I am just floored and at a lost for anything more to say. McCain you are having a bad day today. WOW.

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  4. Michael

    So we are back to the USAG type of scandal. Do we really want an AG Gonzalez type administrator as VP and possible Pres? I don't think so. The dishonorable McCain has once more proven, by his asking Palin to be his running mate, that he makes rash and bad decisions. Not good in a president. Of course, Palin will find a way to blame it on Barack (a good Old Testament name ~ one of Israel's early judges) Obama.

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  5. judy in PA

    So both McCain and Palin have had ethics violations and we want to have them in the top 2 offices of our country. Abuse of power, not another 4 years of this. And they ask who is the real Barack Obama, who is the real John McCain and Sarah Palin. They are the ones who can't be trusted not Obama and Biden.

    Obama/Biden 08

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  6. Knoxville Moderate

    Womp Womp.... Try again. This says a lot for McCain's judgement.

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  7. mark

    !! Obama '08 !!! Obama '08 !!! Obama '08 !!

    October 10, 2008 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |
  8. Paul, OH

    Isn't the headline here "Palin abused power"?

    Why the "..but didn't break law".

    a VP candidate ABUSED HER POWER! The same candidate who speaks so highly of values and truthfulness. THAT is the news here, not whether or not she broke the law.

    Is the standard for Palin set so low that it's newsworthy that she didn't break any laws? I mean, put that in the article, not in the headline.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  9. Accountant Guy

    Surprise, Surprise. She has finally been exposed as a liar, cheat, and lacking in morals. Time to pack it up and go back to Alaska, because we do not want you here!!

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  10. Jeff S.

    If elected, she's ready to continue in the tradition of Bush-Cheney-Gonzales.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  11. Sue Ellen Stamp

    Palin's abuse of power is of no surprise to me. I've watched her body language as well as her acting skills, and I've alway believed she is a very dangerous woman, and ill equipped in every way, to hold a position of power, whether it be the Governor of Alaska or Vice President of the USA. Get rid of her – don't vote the McCain/Palin ticket!


    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  12. Sean Camoni

    The report says she violated an Alaska state statute. Statutes are laws. She broke a law. Just because there's apparently no penalty for this infraction doesn't mean she violated no laws. You're article is incorrect.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  13. SAUL_X

    LOL! The Republican ticket is a joke. Its over! I knew something was up with the beauty queen! I bet if they search deeper they may find more. I'm an independent and a undecided, but not anymore I'm voting for OBAMA!

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  14. J. Terrogano

    Well, so much for soccer mom. Someone who abuses power as a governor is also likely to abuse it in a higher officer. All of the cheerleader, winky facade is falling away to reveal the real Sarah. Very poor judgment by McCain, very poor performance by Palin when confronted with unprepared questions.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  15. Dawn T. Ada, Ohio

    Wow just what we need another vice president who abuses their power and a moron who doesn't know what is going on in the world around him...........Sounds McSAME to me!!!

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  16. Karen - Missouri

    Palin has NO room to be pointing fingers at anyone else with her Alaska Independence Party

    Vogler's greatest moment of glory was to be his 1993 appearance before the United Nations to denounce United States "tyranny" before the entire world and to demand Alaska's freedom. The Alaska secessionist had persuaded the government of Iran to sponsor his anti-American harangue.

    That's right ... Iran. The Islamic dictatorship. The taker of American hostages. The rogue nation that McCain and Palin have excoriated Obama for suggesting we diplomatically engage. That Iran.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  17. Emily

    So? I am sick of these personality attacks on both Palin and Obama.

    I do not see there is any issue with either persons. In the mean time, we are losing money, losing job, losing health everything.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  18. Devon Spencer

    That is breaking the law. As everyone here has said, fix the headline.
    I think this is going to hurt their campaign bad.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  19. Chris

    She said she would cooperate with the investigation . . .she lied.

    She said she didn't abuse her power . . . .she lied

    She says we can't trust obama . . .SHE LIED

    See a pattern?

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  20. Andrea

    she was lying?! what a surprise!!

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  21. Ohio for Obama

    Game Over Republicans, Credibility is lost from both candidates. All this smear tactics just blew up in your face. America is ready to move forward and beyond this crap the McShame campaign been doing.

    Obama/Biden '08

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  22. yvonne coffey

    This women is a disgrace! I wasn't taught to hate ! And John MCCain should be ashamed of himself, What the heck kind of Maverick is he?

    I hail from the Great state Of Pennsylvania! And I like about a million other people know a fraud when we see it,I actually feel sorry for Alaska, The people there will probably take the heat for for her discretions

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  23. Jeff Kratsch

    Thank God the Truth About Palin comes out.. "Abuse of Power!" That's all we need in the White House, for more years of Abuse of Power. McCain just confirmed his complete lack of judgement.. time to retire dude.. you're done.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  24. Mark Ferbet, Grain Valley Missouri

    So, the truth is out... she didn't break laws, but her actions were questionable as far as ethics are concerned.

    Hmmmm... The Republicans will claim this was a witch hunt by Obama supporters... but we must remember that this investigation began before Palin was picked to be VP... and it was a bipartisian group that investigated this...

    Opinion... she should apologize... she doesn't need to quit... just apologize and admit she did something unethical. Let the Nation decide whether they can trust her.

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
  25. conny

    Palain is a criminal, and if this was anyone of the little people or main street we would be in serious trouble. Iam still trying to figure out how in the heck could Palain run for VP of the USA while under a federal investigation. And why was Todd Palain hanging around the office and who were keeping to kids?

    October 10, 2008 08:56 pm at 8:56 pm |
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