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Palin: The verdict: Abuse of power

"Gov. Sarah Palin abused the powers of her office by pressuring subordinates to try to get her former brother-in-law, a state trooper, fired, an investigation by the Alaska Legislature has concluded," the New York Times reported over the weekend. "The inquiry found, however, that she was within her right to dismiss her public safety commissioner, Walt Monegan, who was the trooper's boss. A 263-page report released Friday by lawmakers in Alaska found that Ms. Palin, the Republican vice-presidential nominee, had herself exerted pressure to get Trooper Michael Wooten dismissed, as well as allowed her husband and subordinates to press for his firing, largely as a result of his temperament and past disciplinary problems." 

"Testimony compiled as part of the inquiry, and The Times' own review of e-mail logs from the administration, show that Todd Palin was a fixture in the governor's office, spending about half of his time there," the Los Angeles Times says. "He attended Cabinet meetings that are supposed to be closed to the public, and was copied on a wide variety of high-level government correspondence on issues such as contract negotiations with the police officers union, Alaska Native issues and the privatization of a dairy near the Palins' hometown of Wasilla." 
 

Video: Gov. Sarah Palin has released a statement regarding the findings of a Legislative Council on the firing of Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan. An MSNBC panel weighs in on the story.

The Sunday Boston Globe looks at Palin's early days as mayor: "Wasilla today reflects the results of her free-market approach to development. Running for a second mayoral term in 1999, Palin cited as one of her greatest successes luring a Fred Meyer mega-supermarket to Wasilla. The zoning plan, adopted over then-councilwoman Palin's opposition, proved no impediment for the store, which went up just a few feet from the banks of bucolic Lake Wasilla, with a parking lot that contains Kentucky Fried Chicken, Blockbuster Video, and Carl's Jr. They are among the dominant landmarks in a city that councilwoman Dianne Woodruff says 'looks like a big ugly strip mall from one end to the other.'" 
 
More: "As a vice presidential candidate, Palin has suggested that a similar attitude toward growth would prevail nationally if she were elected. 'We will get out of the way of private-sector progress,' Palin said last week at a Colorado rally. 'It's the small business, the mom-and-pops, that are the cornerstone of America.'"
 
"Palin is keeping reporters at arms' length in her campaign, but she had a very different approach as Alaska's new governor: She couldn't get enough of them. ... [I]n 20 months as governor before McCain tapped her, Palin scheduled more than 300 interviews and press conferences, according to an Associated Press review of her official daily calendar. Among them, local TV reporter Bill McAllister of KTUU interviewed her on numerous occasions before he went to work for her as press secretary in August."