The Wall Street Journal: "An informal adviser who has counseled Gov. Sarah Palin on ethics issues urged her in July to apologize for her handling of the dismissal of the state's public safety commissioner and warned that the matter could snowball into a bigger scandal. He also said, in a letter reviewed by The Wall Street Journal, that she should fire any aides who had raised concerns with the chief over a state trooper who was involved in a bitter divorce with the governor's sister."
"In the letter, written before Sen. John McCain picked the Alaska governor as his running mate, former U.S. Attorney Wevley Shea warned Gov. Palin that 'the situation is now grave' and recommended that she and her husband, Todd Palin, apologize for 'overreaching or perceived overreaching' for using her position to try to get Trooper Mike Wooten fired from the force."
CNN reports that an Alaska judge warned Palin back in 2005 against trying to get her then-state trooper brother-in-law fired.
Bloomberg's Burger and Hopfinger write: "McCain's choice of Sarah Palin as his running mate sent a signal that he would end business as usual and cronyism in government. Her record shows the Alaska governor engaged in some of the same practices she and McCain now condemn."
"Palin's office approved a state job for a friend and campaign aide with whom she shared a land investment, financial records and interviews over the past two weeks show. She hired a former lobbyist for a pipeline company to help oversee a multibillion-dollar deal with that same company. She named a police chief accused of harassment to head the state police. And she sent campaign e-mails on her city hall account while serving as mayor of Wasilla -- conduct for which she later turned in an oil commissioner on ethics charges."
Although the McCain-Palin duo now rail against earmarks, the AP looks at the earmarks Palin has requested in Alaska. "Palin has sought $197 million worth of earmarks for 2009, down about 25 percent from the $256 million she sought in the 2008 budget year. As mayor of tiny Wasilla, Alaska, she hired a lobbyist to seek federal money for special projects. Wasilla obtained 14 earmarks, totaling $27 million, between 2000-2003, according to Taxpayers for Common Sense."
"Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama hasn't asked for any earmarks this year. The Illinois senator sought $311 million in such funding last year. McCain, an Arizona senator, doesn't seek earmarks for his state."
The Seattle Times digs into Sarah Palin's first year as the mayor of Wasilla. "She became embroiled in personnel challenges, a thwarted attempt to pack the City Council and a standoff with her local newspaper. Her first months were so contentious and polarizing that critics started talking recall."
The New York Times finds that the gas pipeline Palin bragged about during her convo speech is not as done of a deal as she claimed. "The reality, however, is far more ambiguous than the impression Ms. Palin has left at the convention and on the campaign trail. Certainly she proved effective in attracting developers to a project that has eluded Alaska governors for three decades. But an examination of the pipeline project also found that Ms. Palin has overstated both the progress that has been made and the certainty of success."
"The pipeline exists only on paper. The first section has yet to be laid, federal approvals are years away and the pipeline will not be completed for at least a decade. In fact, although it is the centerpiece of Ms. Palin's relatively brief record as governor, the pipeline might never be built, and under a worst-case scenario, the state could lose up to $500 million it committed to defray regulatory and other costs."
"South Carolina Democratic chairwoman Carol Fowler sharply attacked Sarah Palin today, saying John McCain had chosen a running mate 'whose primary qualification seems to be that she hasn't had an abortion,'" Politico's Martin reports.
Fowler later apologized in a statement: "I personally admire and respect the difficult choices that women make everyday, and I apologize to anyone who finds my comment offensive. I clumsily was making a point about people in South Carolina who may vote based on a single issue. Whether it's the environment, the economy, the war or a woman's right to choose, there are people who will cast their vote based on a single issue. That was the only point I was attempting to make."
Palin got 3,000 people to show up to a rally in Fairbanks for her return to Alaska. (That's like getting 30,000 folks, well, anywhere else.
NBC/NJ's Matthew E. Berger reports that Palin couldn't wait to descend down the stairs from her campaign plane lat night. The plans called for her to wait for the media and staff to leave first, set up, and then allow the doors to open for a grand entrance. But the sight of her family, and several thousand of her Alaskan brethren waiting for her on the tarmac of the Fairbanks airport, was too much. Palin could be heard nearly squealing with delight in the front of the plane at the sight of three of her children at the foot of the stairs, and according to several aides, refused to stay inside the plane.
Palin and husband Todd came back to her home state nearly two weeks after she secretly flew to Ohio to become the Republican vice presidential nominee. Officially back in the state to send her eldest son, Track, off to Iraq, the homecoming marks a culmination of what has been a whirlwind journey for the Alaskan governor. And perhaps more importantly, it marks the start of her much-anticipated first extensive television interview, which will take place throughout Thursday and Friday.
"John McCain and I are ready, and with your help, we are going to win," she told the crowd.