July 15, 2009, Anchorage, Alaska – The Alaska Personnel Board has rejected another ethics complaint lodged against Governor Sarah Palin (Ethics, 2009, Â¶1).
The complaint alleged that the governor misused state time by accepting media interviews. The complaint also alleged that Governor Palin was paid for television and radio interviews. Governor Palin has not been paid for media interviews (Ethics, 2009, Â¶2).
This complaint was filed by Raymond Alvin Ward on July 9. It was rejected in part because it was not properly notarized. In addition, Personnel Board Chairman Debra English said the board had already determined media interviews did not violate the Ethics Act. Ward lacked evidence to support his allegation that the governor received any payment for media interviews (Ethics, 2009, Â¶3).
Governor Palin’s attorney, Thomas Van Flein, responded to the dismissal saying, “The board has appropriately determined that a complaint must have a factual basis of some type and that complaints based on pure speculation are not proper. This most recent complaint demonstrates the problem with the system, and the manner in which it can be abused” (Ethics, 2009, Â¶4).
“It’s deja-vu all over again” to quote one of Reagan’s best lines. One has to wonder, truly, at the level of political gamesmanship that is being played out at the expense of Governor Palin AND the state of Alaska. It has been noted before that Governor Palin is a strong advocate of ethics reform – she ran on that principle for the governorship. It is obvious that her political opponents have used that against her in an attempt to smear her record, and diminish her credibility as honest and ethical public servant. There must be a certain level of frustration on the part of the complainants: nothing sticks. Even Governor Palin has a sense of humor about the whole thing: her “Twitter comment”:
AKGovSarahPalin: Ethics issue would almost be funny if it weren’t such an abuse of justice. AKns deserve our public resources be used wisely, not frivolously
4:06 PM Jul 14th from TwitterBerry (Palin, 2009, Â¶1).
AKGovSarahPalinAre these constant, wasteful thumped-up ethics charges result of not caving when the filer begged for job? More frivolous chrgs filed today:
3:51 PM Jul 14th from TwitterBerry (Palin, 2009, Â¶1).
I have to admit to a bit of schadenfreude. Knowing that all of the effort to diminish Governor Palin’s popularity has backfired makes me smile. I’m sure Governor Palin, her family, her staff, and many Alaskans will find this strange, but there is actually some good in all of this:
#1) The state will revamp their ethics laws – so that these frivolous suits aren’t used in an unethical way
#2) The opposition’s strategy has been revealed – they will stop at nothing to smear their enemies, and will stoop to trying to financially ruin their opponents
#3) The strategy has only served to put Governor Palin in the news more often
#4) Governor Palin is now more popular than ever
I could go on, but you get the picture. “That which doesn’t destroy me, only makes me stronger.” Governor Palin has, for the moment, stepped out of the ring. But don’t count her out. The next bell is about to sound.
Another ethics complaint rejected. (2009, July 15). State of Alaska, Governor. Retrieved July 16, 2009 from: http://www.gov.state.ak.us/news.php?id=1968.
Palin, S.L.H. (2009, July 14). “Funny if not abuse of justice.” Twitter, AKGovSarahPalin. Retrieved July 16, 2009 from: http://www.twitter.com/AKGovSarahPalin/status/2640842569
Palin, S.L.H. (2009, July 14). “More frivolous charges filed.” Twitter, AKGovSarahPalin. Retrieved July 16, 2009 from: http://twitter.com/AKGovSarahPalin/status/2640611651