Which, if any, of these statements do you disagree with?
1. All political power is inherent in the people; that all government originates with the people, is founded on their will only, is instituted to protect the rights of the individual.
2. All persons have a natural right to life, liberty, the pursuit of happiness, and the enjoyment of the rewards of their own industry.
3. All persons are equal and entitled to equal protection under the law.
On board so far?
Good. What are the above statments? They are the preamble to the platform and goals of the Alaska Independence Party.
Here are some of their specific goals and tenants:
1. To effect full compliance with the constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Alaska.
2. To support and defend States' Rights, Individual Rights, Property Rights, and the Equal Footing Doctrine as guaranteed by the constitutions of the United States of America and the state of Alaska.
And a whole bunch of other things like gun rights, abolishing property taxes, etc...
Here is the link to their platform and goals. You will notice that there is no mention of secession.
I find myself in the strange position of having to defend the Alaska Independence Party.
Because of the emails that have surfaced between Palin and Schmidt about whether or not Todd was a believing member of that party.
Now, the Left would have you believe that the AIP is some radical, secessionist group that hates America.
On the contrary. I think they're closer to loving the principles of America than Washington D.C. is at this point.
They clearly state in their platform that they support the United States Constitution along with Alaska's. They are not a lawless, nuke-happy organization.
Now, I don't agree with all their tenants, and I doubt Todd does either, which is why the Palins say he registered as AIP by mistake. The AIP appears to lean libertarian, and I don't agree with all aspects of libertarianism, but there are some parts of it that are dead on. I don't throw out the baby with the bathwater.
Now, given the position that the AIP takes on the Constitution and the blatant disregard that the federal government seems to have for the Constitution these days, it would naturally follow that the AIP doesn't rule out secession.
As I've said before, good. That's that good old, independent spirit that said, "If Britain's going to ignore the law and push tyranny down our throats, we're not going to be part of Britain anymore."
Folks, that's not hating America. That's about as American as you can get.
So all this talk about whether or not Todd believed in the AIP, I believe, doesn't really matter anyway.
But since it is now a topic, let's investigate a little further.
As I've stated before, Sarah Palin alleged that Todd registered as part of the AIP by mistake, thinking that he was registering as Independent. Sarah Palin said in her emails to Schmidt that he caught his mistake when they moved and changed his party registration then.
Okay, let's break down the facts:
Todd was registered as a member of the AIP from 1995 to 2002, when he changed his registration. That's seven years, just like Sarah Palin said in her email to Schmidt (see the post below for the emails).
It is also worth noting that Sarah Palin registered as Republican her whole life.
As for the voter registration form itself, I couldn't find a pdf of a 1995 version of the form (I don't know if it has changed since then or not), but here's the current format:
You'll note that just plain "Independent" is not on the form, and Non-partisan and Undeclared are listed further down. If Todd just skimmed the form without looking too closely, I can see how it would be easy to check the wrong box. Inattentive, perhaps, but hardly scandalous.
Sarah Palin described the option in her email to Schmidt as "Alaska Independent." Again, I don't know if the 1995 registration form was different or the same, so I have no idea if she is lying, misremembering, or telling the truth. Remembering exactly what a piece of paper said that you didn't even sign from seven years prior is quite a feat anyway.
Before 2000, Alaska had blanket primaries where party affiliation didn't have anything to do with who you voted for, so if you made a mistake you would never have known it.
In 2002, the Palins moved to their current home in Wasilla. You only have to register to vote once, but when you move, you must change your address on the registration form. When they moved and went to change their addresses, Todd Palin checked a different box.
Now, as I've said, I don't really have any bone to pick with the AIP anyway. But I don't see any evidence that either one of the Palins are anything but Republicans. If Sarah Palin wanted to secede from the union, she wouldn't be so all-fired anxious to get the Trans-Canada pipeline built. She would be focused on the All-Alaska gasline, which is what Wally Hickel (who once ran on the AIP ticket) wanted her to focus on.
And then some have said, "Well, she went to the AIP convention in 2000."
Yes, and where was the AIP convention held in 2000? That's right, in Wasilla.
She was mayor; going to the convention was just a polite thing to do as part of her job. (For the record, she was registered as Republican at the time.)
Now, many members of the AIP support Sarah Palin. But it would be nearly impossible for this not to be the case since the AIP is the largest third party of any of the states.
Having said that, I think it's obvious that Sarah Palin (beyond the more obvious things like a firm belief in the Constitution and states' rights) does not adhere to many ideals of the AIP. If she did, she wouldn't have run for Vice President of the United States.
I would even go so far as to say she probably doesn't like the element of the party that does advocate secession, since she referred to the party in her email as "anti-American."
As Governor, she taped this video message for the AIP. In it she clearly referred to them as another party with different ideas and competing interests and that it was healthy to hear all voices in the debate, including theirs.
What on earth is wrong with those statements?
Some members of the AIP claim that Sarah Palin was a member of the party before she was mayor in 1996, but her registration records prove that she was Republican all the way from 1984 (in 1984, Sarah Palin was 20; it was also the first Presidential election year in which she could vote).
She does tend to lean a little libertarian, which is why, I think, most members of the AIP love her and some like to claim her as one of their own.
In conclusion, the Palins are not radicals, the AIP is not radical, and the Palins very much love the United States of America and haven't given up on it just yet. It's really no big deal, but people will grasp at any straw they can these days.