Judge Upholds Troopergate Investigation of Gov. Sarah Palin

Shortly before the start of the Vice Presidential debate, Alaskan judge Peter Michalski handed down a major ruling threw out a challenge by Republican politicians seeking to block an investigation into Gov. Sarah Palin in the so-called Troopergate scandal. [Update: I discussed this last night on Rachael Maddow’s show, click here).

Republicans have tried to stop the investigation, which was ordered by members of both parties into Palin’s role in firing a state official. Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan had refused to fire a state trooper who was involved in a contentious divorce from Palin’s sister. Palin then fired Monegan when he wouldn’t dismiss the trooper, though Palin says he was fired over budget disagreements.

Judge Peter Michalski held that the Republican challenge was meritless and that the troopergate investigation is a valid exercise of legislative authority: “It is legitimately within the scope of the legislature’s investigatory power to inquire into the circumstances surrounding the termination (of) a public officer the legislature had previously confirmed.”

The obstruction of the legislative investigation — and Palin’s refusal to comply with subpoenas is extremely abusive in my view. It is precisely the type of frivolous claims that have been raised by the Bush Administration to stop legitimate inquiries — trying to use motions and appeals to simply delay cases until after the second term is over. It is astonishing to see a candidate for national office who is refusing to comply with a valid subpoena. The question is whether this judicial ruling will alter Palin’s position.

For the full story, click here.

22 thoughts on “Judge Upholds Troopergate Investigation of Gov. Sarah Palin”

  1. Well I think she meant it but you might be right. Might just be babble. Thats why you think someone will challenge the McCain camp on that since they won’t let anyone actually “talk” to one of our candidates for Vice President.

  2. I am hoping that these statements are just her stupidity showing through and not Rove’s influence that I mentioned earlier. In what universe can she expect to gain any control of the judiciary without throwing out the Constitutiona as a whole?

  3. I mean this is very frightening.

    I mean its bad enough Cheney’s muddying of the role of the veep to avoid investigations but she’s talking about screwing around with the Supreme Court!

    She just said that in a McCain\Palin presidency, their “authority might bleed” over to the Judiciary.

    Its amazing to me that she thought she could even say such a thing, much less get away with it. But get away with it she seems to be doing.

    Every “analyst” out there is yacking endlessly about how “folksy” she managed to be, as if thats a benchmark for picking a potential leader of the country. But no one is talking about her statements on expanding the Vice Presidents powers, or worse, her statements this morning after the debate, on her interview on Fox News where she openly states she intends on expanding powers even into the Judical branch of the government.

    What powers she thinks she or McCain could posses in the Judiciary and just where she thinks she will draw these powers, is anyones guess.

    Because no ones bothered to ask her yet.

  4. It would be nice if I would spell Palin’s name correctly! It must be the media’s fault. They keep asking me too many questions that I don’t want to answer!

  5. Pslin’s amazing comments that the Constitution had flexibility on the power of the Vice President stunned me. For someone so stupid, I have to bet that Rove is in on the training sessions and taking a page out of the Dick Cheney rulebook.

  6. I just read this quote from Palin’s Fox news Interview this morning with Carl Cameron. Asking about how she’d expand the Vice Presidential powers beyond what Cheney has done, Palin said the following;

    “Well, again, as I tried to explain last night, our executive branch will know what our job is.

    We have the three very distinct branches of government.

    You know, we might be bleeding our authority over to the Legislative or Judicial branch to do our job in the Executive branch as administers.”

    So apparently not only does Sarah Palin think the Vice President has more power in the Senate than he does, but she also now thinks that she somehow, has a role in the JUDICIARY!!!



    I don’t get it. From WHERE does she think the Vice Presidents office would draw ANY powers having ANYTHING WHATSOEVER to do with the JUDICIARY?

    Sorry for the caps but come ON. Whats happening here?

  7. So I was right about her seeking the Vice Presidency while refusing to comply with a subpoena? I thought that seemed odd. I figure if that had happened before we’d have heard about it by now. I’ve never heard of it. People always used to comply with subpoenas. I wonder if they can arrest their own governor for contempt?

    Since she commands the State Police and National Guard I guess not but it would be interesting to see that happen.

  8. Oh I see you’re talking about the expansion of vice presidential powers.

  9. rcampbell
    1, October 3, 2008 at 6:39 pm
    Meaning no disrespect to LEO and his/her positions, I meant to confirm my agreement with Palindrome’s post.


    Okay, mixing up who said what is an easy error to make.

  10. “rcampbell 1, October 3, 2008 at 5:09 pm

    “… this was a much better way to marginalize, diminish and to some extent ignore the completely irrelevant Gov. Palin without appearing as surly and caustic and downright mean as McCain did during his losing encounter with President Obama.”


    I’ve taken to calling him John McCrotchet but only because
    John McCantankerous has too many syllables.

    Personally, I got bored and slightly irritated listening to her ‘singsong’ speaking style about half to two-thirds the way through.
    I thought Joe Biden did comparatively very well.

  11. jonathanturley
    1, October 3, 2008 at 6:45 pm

    I will be discussing this issue on Rachael Meadow tonight on MSNBC.

    Ok, but don’t call her Meadow or she might get mad, lol.

    I don’t see how they can allow someone under investigation who won’t comply with her own states subpoenas to run for Vice President.

    It seems that would be a matter that would need to be settled before running for the second highest office in the land.

    By the way Professor Turley, I’M “Joe Sixpack” (more like Joe Twelvepack) and I’m scared to death of this woman being anywhere near the Oval Office unless its on a tour. This can’t be happening.

    I’ll be watching.

  12. rcampbell
    1, October 3, 2008 at 5:07 pm

    Cro, I have to agree with LEO on this one. There were lots of ways for Biden to have this debate blow up in his face. One of those would have been to get really heavy handed with her.

    Well thats my point. Thats why he’s “one of the big boys”. He’s supposed to be able to deal with sensitive situations like that and still put her in her place. He didn’t. She acted all night like she was putting him in his place. Which she wasn’t. But she acted like it and Biden let her do it unchallenged for the most part.

    I think he won on substance and the issues but as a whole, he let way too many falsehoods by his opponent go unchallenged so taken as a whole, I must agree with the media and say for the most part, its a wash, with the tide in his favor.

    In a debate you are supposed to refute your opponents positions and correct incorrect data that they present. He failed to do that. Instead he made a lot of speeches and debated a candidate who wasn’t there (McLoon).

    So all in all to me it was a wash, but he did do better than Palin factually and in substance.

    She was an empty vassal, and produced nothing but far right wing rhetoric and stump speeches and refused to answer almost any questions, so she did worse than he did in that respect.

    But in pleasing Joe Sixpack (aka Joe Dumbass) she scored big. She came across as in control and smart, because these people are stupid and don’t listen to what someones saying but instead pay attention to how they say it.

  13. Meaning no disrespect to LEO and his/her positions, I meant to confirm my agreement with Palindrome’s post.

  14. Also, Cro, this was a much better way to marginalize, diminish and to some extent ignore the completely irrelevant Gov. Palin without appearing as surly and caustic and downright mean as McCain did during his losing encounter with President Obama.

  15. Cro, I have to agree with LEO on this one. There were lots of ways for Biden to have this debate blow up in his face. One of those would have been to get really heavy handed with her. It was far better for him to remind people that it’s John McCain’s record and vision and political views that head the ticket, not Gov. Palin.

    I heard one pundit say he saw Biden as sounding and appearing Presidential while (can I call ya..) Sarah sounded decidely Mayoral.

    It’s just spooky the way the GOP tickets’ poll numbers rise and fall based on what Klondike Kate does. What a sad state of affairs for McCain that GOP voters are apparently pretty indifferent to him, but are willing to vote for a PRESIDENT they don’t want in order to boost the career of an absolutely terrible VP choice they do want. What future for John McCancer are they hoping for? Man, they’re a sick and twisted bunch on the right!!

  16. Well I hope you’re right Palindrome. I felt Biden was too sheepish, and let too many opportunities pass him by.

    For example, when Biden spoke of the commanding general in Afghanistan, Palin tried to counteract the critics by stating the generals name for Biden, not once, but twice.

    Problem was, she gave the wrong name each time.

    Biden was referring to General David McKiernan.

    But she referred to him as General “McClellan”.

    As she did this, she put her smug little “holier than thou” face on, and smirked as if she was educating Biden on something, yet all the while, she really looked like an idiot to anyone who knew the name she was proudly announcing as if to educate Biden, was wrong.

    Biden didn’t correct her there. He should have. That one correction would have shifted the debate and put her on the ropes.

    All he had to do was look at her and say, “I’m not familar with General McClellan in Afghanistan, could you possibly be referring to General David McKiernan?”

    That would have not been “bullying”, but it would have been the turning point of the debate. It would have reinforced the fact that Palin doesn’t know what she’s talking about and made Biden look like the smart elder statesman.

    Palin is the E-PIT-O-MEE of a sorely underqualified undereducated right wing stooge.

    She’s Monica Goodling all over again, only this time she wants to rule the world. She’s stupid, and thus she’s dangerous, and we deserve better than that.

  17. I think Biden was doing the right thing by debating McCain last night. He pretty much worked around Caribou Barbie which effectively deflected “big bad mean Joe” tropes that the right would have trotted out in her defense. He directly responded to some of her more egregious lies, but mostly focused on getting his message across.

  18. Biden was afraid of her last night. She is a rube, and he let her off the hook so many times.

    When she accused him of being “for things before he’s against him”, he should have said “you mean like that bridge to nowhere you were for before you were against?”.

    And I would have asked how the American people are supposed to trust her to uphold the laws when she won’t even submit to the laws of her own state and cooperate with an investigation?

    This woman is a joke. A sick, twisted fanatical corrupt joke. And its an INSULT to me, and every American that she’s being suggested to rule over me, and 300 million other Americans for the next 4 years.

    Shes not smarter than me, and I’m not that smart, so she doesn’t have the right to lead me, or anyone.

  19. J.T. stated:

    “Palin’s refusal to comply with subpoenas is extremely abusive in my view.”

    Although “abusive”, isn’t it also illegal to ignore a lawful subpoena?

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