Palin Cleared of Ethics Charges
Amazing! Election eve vindication. NYTimes:
ANCHORAGE — A report released by a state board Monday found that Gov. Sarah Palin did not apply improper pressure to try to dismiss a state trooper who was her former brother-in-law and did not violate state ethics laws in the firing of her public safety commissioner.
The report by the Alaska Personnel Board contradicts the conclusions last month of a separate inquiry into the matter overseen by a bipartisan legislative panel. The inquiry found that Ms. Palin had breached a state ethics act by pressing to have the trooper, Mike Wooten, fired. The panel said, however, that the governor was within her rights to fire the public safety commissioner, Walt Monegan.
The personnel board’s report, based on an investigation led by an independent counsel, Timothy J. Petumenos, concluded that there was no evidence to prove Ms. Palin or any state employee had acted improperly in Mr. Monegan’s dismissal.
The report, released at a Monday afternoon press conference at the Hotel Captain Cook, presents the findings and recommendations of Anchorage lawyer Timothy Petumenos, hired as independent counsel for the Personnel Board to examine several complaints against Palin.
Petumenos wrote the Legislature’s special counsel, former state prosecutor Steve Branchflower, used the wrong state law as the basis for his conclusions and also misconstrued the evidence.