Sunday, January 31, 2010

Ailes and Alaska

Fox News dude, Roger Ailes talked about Sarah Palin on ABC today:

And the state of Alaska is trying to clean up the mess left by the anklebiters in the wake of the 2008 election. The article is a tad biased, but here it is:

Attorney General Dan Sullivan has proposed broad changes to Alaska's ethics rules that Palin complained helped drive her out. One Sullivan recommendation that might sound familiar: Setting ethical standards for spouses and kids to travel with the governor or lieutenant governor at taxpayer expense.

Another would implement an opinion he issued in August, that the state could pay legal fees executive branch officials rack up fighting ethics complaints, if the official is exonerated by an attorney general, independent investigator or by the state Personnel Board, whose members are appointed by the governor.

Sullivan's proposals are on track to take effect after a review of public comments unless the legislature passes superseding law. The prospects for that happening - in an election year, with many Alaskans worried about job losses and energy prices - appear dim....

But at least one lawmaker believes any change to the ethics code should come from the Legislature, rather than from a political appointee.

Rep. Max Gruenberg, D-Anchorage, has introduced legislation with some provisions similar to Sullivan's for travel and legal fee reimbursement. He would like the state to put off implementation of Sullivan's plan, pending legislative action.

None of Sullivan's proposals would retroactively benefit Palin, according to the state's ethics attorney. But they do speak directly to complaints raised during her tumultuous two-and-a-half years in office, and are aimed at clearing up gray areas and, according to Sullivan, discouraging abuse.....

Her emergence on the national political scene prompted a flood of public records requests, the volume of which state officials hadn't seen before and are still working to fulfill, and set off a flurry of ethics complaints.

More than 20 complaints were filed against her with all but two, related to travel and a legal defense fund, dismissed, said her personal attorney, Thomas Van Flein.

While the defense fund issue is still pending, the travel complaint, related to Palin charging the state when her kids traveled with her, was settled, with Palin agreeing to reimburse the state for some questionable costs. The investigator's finding, that there is little in state rules to determine ethical travel standards for the first family, gave rise to Sullivan's proposal that a family member can tag along at state cost if his or her presence is required for state business or otherwise "benefits the state....."

At least two legislators, including one Democrat, are supporting measures to bar those lodging ethics complaints from taking their charges public. If they do, their complaints would be dismissed. The lawmakers said the proposal would reduce the frivolous or partisan complaints that they say besieged Palin.

"You want to make political points against Sarah Palin? Hire a hall," said Rep. Mike Doogan, an Anchorage Democrat and former journalist. "Don't make the state of Alaska your soapbox. ... This is really about what's right here, for anybody who finds themselves in that situation."

Anchorage resident Andree McLeod, who's filed numerous complaints against Palin, believes each had merit.

"This is the only avenue I have to address the misconduct of government officials," she said, adding that lawmakers are "totally out of line" if they believe any of her complaints were politically motivated.

Right, Andree. Riiiiiight:

I honestly think Andree's got a few screws loose. Just my personal opinion. Who on earth has the time to pour over thousands of documents? Does this woman have a life? Apparently not. She strikes me as a tad obsessed, and that's being extremely generous.

It spoke volumes when Andree showed up at the Personnel Board's press conference announcing that Palin had been cleared of the Troopergate charges, and the first thing Andree said was that the Independent Prosecutor spelled her name wrong. She's a few asteroids short of a belt, if you ask me.

To hear and see the press conference where Palin appointed Attorney General Dan Sullivan, go here , here, and here.

No comments: