By Gary P Jackson
To fully understand how Barack Obama and his Chicago thug politics work, you must know a little history of just how Obama weaseled his way into political office in the first place. The story of how Obama went from a street thug, rabble rouser, and “community organizer” to being the lackey of unrepentant murdering domestic terrorist William Ayers, to an Illinois State Senator, and then a United States Senator, and ultimately President, is a case study in lies, betrayal, and corruption.
This from David Horowitz’s Discover The Networks archives:
The Pro-Soviet Alice Palmer Paves Obama’s Path to Elected Office:
A notable attendee at the aforementioned political gatherings which Ayers and Dohrn hosted on behalf of Obama (in the mid-1990s) was Democratic state senator Alice J. Palmer (of Illinois’ 13th District), who quickly developed a friendly relationship with Obama. Prior to her stint in politics, Palmer had worked for the Black Press Institute and was editor of the Black Press Review. During the Cold War, she supported the Soviet Union and spoke out against the United States. In the 1980s she served as an executive board member of the U.S. Peace Council, which the FBI identified as a Communist front group (and which was an affiliate of the World Peace Council, an international Soviet front). Palmer participated in the World Peace Council’s Prague assembly in 1983 — just as the USSR was launching its “nuclear freeze” movement, a scheme that would have frozen Soviet nuclear and military superiority in place.
State senator Palmer was instrumental in Obama’s entry into politics. In 1995 Palmer decided to pursue an opportunity to run for a higher office when Mel Reynolds, the congressman from Illinois’ 2nd District, resigned from the House of Representatives amid a sexual scandal involving him and an underage campaign volunteer. As Palmer prepared to leave the state senate, she hand-picked Obama as the person she most wanted to fill her newly vacated senate seat. Toward that end, she introduced Obama to party elders and donors as her preferred successor, and helped him gather the signatures required for getting his name placed on the ballot.
Obama Betrays Palmer:
But in November 1995, Jesse Jackson, Jr. defeated Palmer in a special election for Reynolds’ empty congressional seat. At that point, Palmer filed to retain the Democratic nomination for the state senate seat she had encouraged Obama to pursue; that seat would be up for grabs in the November 1996 elections. She asked Obama to politely withdraw from the race and offered to help him find an alternative position elsewhere.
But Obama refused to withdraw, so Palmer resolved to run against him (and two other opponents who also had declared their candidacy) in the 1996 Democratic primary. To get her name placed on the ballot, Palmer hastily gathered more than the minimum number of signatures required. Obama promptly challenged the legitimacy of those signatures and charged Palmer with fraud. A subsequent investigation found that a number of the names on Palmer’s petition were invalid, thus she was knocked off the ballot. (Names could be eliminated from a candidate’s petition for a variety of reasons. For example, if a name was printed rather than written in cursive script, it was considered invalid. Or if the person collecting the signatures was not registered to perform that task, any signatures that he or she had collected likewise were nullified.)
Obama also successfully challenged the signatures gathered by his other two opponents, and both of them were disqualified as well. Consequently, Obama ran unopposed in the Democratic primary and won by default.
“I liked Alice Palmer a lot,” Obama would later reflect. “I thought she was a good public servant. It [the process by which Obama had gotten Palmer's name removed from the ballot] was very awkward. That part of it I wish had played out entirely differently.“
The statement by Obama is very telling about the man. Here’s someone who made him an instant player in the communist cesspool that is Illinois politics, and he thanks her by betrayal, but felt “awkward” after the fact. He couldn’t have felt all that awkward, because when it came time to run for the United States Senate he had no problem at all using Chicago thug tactics on both his Marxist-democrat primary challenger, as well as his Republican challenger, Jack Ryan.
Many know the Jack Ryan story. But in case one has forgotten, here’s how Obama cleared the way to basically run unopposed.
Jack Ryan was divorced from actress Jeri Ryan.
The Chicago Tribune endorsed Obama’s campaign. This is important because the Tribune persuaded a Marxist-democrat-appointed judge in California to open the sealed divorce records of the couple. The Ryans have a son, and there were some very …. how shall I put this …. odd sexual practices, that had taken place, and not all of it was consensual.
Jeri used this as a basis to take custody of the son. However, thinking of the kid and trying to be good parents, they asked for the records to be sealed, so he would never know what had went on. No need for him to know some of the things dad did, as nothing good would come from it.
Team Obama sure didn’t care about the Ryans’ child. We’ll see this play out later in the way Obama’s surrogates viciously attacked Sarah Palin’s children, DIRECTLY.
The resulting scandal from all of this forced Ryan to drop out of the race. Again, Chicago thug politics, Obama style.
Obama didn’t run unopposed though, at the last possible moment Dr Alan Keyes, a black Conservative, was recruited to try and stop this mad man, but it was just too little, too late, so Barack Obama became the junior Senator from Illinois.
Again, many know that story, but how many know how Obama became the Marxist-democrat party nominee?
Long before there was Jack Ryan, there was Blair Hull.
Hull, who funded himself with $28 million, had a significant lead early on. Then allegations surfaced that he had threatened to kill his wife during an argument, and that he was arrested for battery. Although charges were never filed, the damage to Hull’s campaign was done.
This information was put out there by Team Obama.
It’s very telling that rather than work hard and compete against the other candidates in the marketplace of ideas, Obama and his kind would rather move heaven and earth in an attempt to get rid of any competition, by using dirty tricks. Obama learned the gospel of anti-American communist Saul Alinsky very well.
By the way, to learn the entire sorry tale of Obama’s life, from his birth to his ties to radical terrorists, anti-American communists, and other misc. unsavory characters and dangerous subversives, to time in the White House, with all of the sickening details in between, go to the Obama page at Discover the Networks here.
We all know that once Obama became a United States Senator, he worked only occasionally, around 143 days total, before abandoning his job to run for President, something he promised the voters of Illinois he would not do in his first term. The first in a very long line of lies and broken promises to the American people.
We also know that once Obama was elected President, there was some sort of negotiations between Obama and now impeached Governor Rod Blagojevich that involved the Governor appointing long time Obama confidant Valerie Jarrett to Barry’s now vacant Senate seat, in exchange for some sort of payoff to Blagojevich. Read more here.
Now before becoming President, there was the campaign. During the primaries, Team Obama was too busy sliming Hillary Clinton to pay much attention to the Republican ticket, and thanks to a true fight for the Marxist-democrat party nomination, paid little attention John McCain. Instead, Team Obama counted on their media partners to do their job for them, which they did.
It wasn’t until John McCain announced that Sarah Palin would be his running mate that Obama and his stooges went into full on panic mode. Despite what the media, and the Marxist-democrat spin machine would love for you to believe, Team Obama was well aware of Sarah’s record and her solid performance as Governor of Alaska. If you remember, they immediately stopped running as much against McCain, and started treating Sarah like SHE was the presidential nominee.
One of the first Team Obama members to panic was the Mao Tse Tung loving Anita Dunn. Dunn, who was made infamous by Glenn Beck, knew all too well just how tough Sarah Palin is, and what a formidable opponent she would be.
Dunn had advised former Governor Tony Knowles as he ran against Sarah for Alaska’s top job. David L Riddick (aka The Aged P) had this to say:
Time Magazine, official mouthpiece of the Obama administration, has an excerpt from “The Audacity to Win” by David Plouffe who was a key figure in Obama’s 2008 campaign. It’s an interesting behind the scenes glimpse into what has to be acknowledged as one of the most successful sales campaigns in marketing history. But what caught my eye was a fascinating factoid buried deep in the section describing how Plouffe and Co. reacted to McCain’s selection of Governor Palin as his running mate.
Palin was a bolt of lightning, a true surprise. She was such a long shot, I didn’t even have her research file on my computer, as I did for the likely McCain picks. I started Googling her, refreshing my memory while I waited for our research to be sent.
On our 6:00 a.m. conference call, [campaign adviser] Anita Dunn, who had worked against Palin in Alaska in the 2006 governor’s race, warned us that she was a formidable political talent
[ ... ]
Yes – that Anita Dunn, White House Communications Director, enemy of Fox News and admirer of Mao Tse Tung. Dunn, who started out working for President Carter’s chief of staff, Hamilton Jordan, is regarded by Democrats as one of the their most highly experienced strategists. That’s why David Axelrod brought her into the Obama campaign team. It turns out that she also advised Tony Knowles in the 2006 Alaska Gubernatorial campaign.
“All of you on this call should watch video of her debates and speeches,” Dunn counseled. “The substance is thin, but she’s a very able performer. And her story is out of Hollywood. She’ll be a phenomenon for a while.“
Actually she also advised Knowles in his 2004 Senate bid so she clearly has close links with Alaska.
It’s quite clear that the Obama team was thrown into disarray by the Palin pick because over the next few weeks they threw every resource into undermining her credibility. Indeed at times it was as if she was Obama’s presidential opponent, rather than McCain.
The anti-Palin campaign operated, as we know, on two levels. Publicly one theme was “inexperience” though, given Obama’s shallow CV, this held some risk. Another was questioning the governor’s reformist/ethical credentials which Dunn herself laughably attempted just a few days after the nomination.
It was laughable not just because Obama had never aligned himself with any project that attempted to clean up the seedy politics of Chicago/Cook County but, as Michelle Malkin pointed out, Dunn herself had been very close to Tom Daschle.
Of course, Mao Tse Dunn wasn’t the only Team Obama member who was concerned. Obama’s then Senate Chief of Staff, “Alaskan” Pete Rouse, who now serves as a White House adviser, was tasked to use his many contacts to see how they could slime Sarah Palin.
The notoriously left wing Anchorage Daily News ran a puff piece on Rouse, who despite living full time in the D. C. area, still votes absentee in Alaska. Here are some interesting bits:
He once helped run state government in Juneau, played shortstop in a local softball league, and he still votes as an Alaska resident.
But these days, Pete Rouse works in the White House, two doors from his close friend, President Barack Obama.
For 25 years as the consummate Democratic insider in the U.S. Senate, Rouse played a quiet role as the backdoor connection for Alaska’s all-Republican delegation to the other side of the aisle in Congress. He was the longtime chief of staff for Sen. Tom Daschle, D-S.D., the one-time Senate majority leader, and starting in 2004 Rouse took on the same job for a promising young freshman senator from Illinois.
Today, as special adviser to Obama, Rouse is in the innermost circle of the West Wing. His office sits between chief of staff Rahm Emanuel and communications director David Axelrod (for fans of “The West Wing” television series, that would be Josh Lyman’s office).
His Alaska roots run deeper than those of almost anyone reading these words. His mother, the daughter of Japanese immigrants, grew up in Anchorage starting in World War I, when it was a railroad construction town. His cousin was the longtime municipal attorney for the City of Palmer.
But Rouse himself was born on the East Coast and had never been west of Denver when he flew to Alaska in late 1978 to visit a friend, Alaska’s newly elected Republican lieutenant governor, Terry Miller.
Rouse ended up working as Miller’s chief of staff for the final four years of Gov. Jay Hammond’s administration. It was a great experience, Rouse said, a time when Juneau was filled with young idealists eager to grapple with the state’s new oil money, infrastructure need and unformed social policies.
“Juneau at the time was 19,000 people, but it was really a town on the move in terms of young, well-educated people excited by these policy issues,” he recalled.
[ ... ]
Rouse also brought a team of political veterans, many from the Daschle camp, into the Obama campaign.
“When Pete went to work for Barack, what Barack got — and I don’t think he realized it — was the only network in Democratic circles that from both a policy and political perspective came close to the Clinton network,” political consultant Anita Dunn told the Post recently.
By last August, Rouse had shifted to working full-time for the campaign. An Obama campaign trip to Alaska was almost a certainty, he said, until Gov. Sarah Palin was tapped for the Republican vice-presidential nominee. Pre-Palin, he said, the campaign felt it had a chance to win the heavily Republican state, based on the enthusiasm shown in caucuses for Obama.
[ ... ]
One of Rouse’s best friends in Alaska is state Sen. Kim Elton, D-Juneau. Rouse was the one who recruited Elton, a former journalist, into politics to work for Miller. Elton said Rouse is always eager for e-mailed photos of Romeo, the black wolf often photographed around Juneau.
Elton said he followed the presidential race through Rouse, backing Obama early on the strength of his friend’s endorsement. But he told Rouse he couldn’t talk about Palin once she was named to the Republican ticket. As chairman of the Legislative Council, Elton played a central role in the Legislature’s “Troopergate” investigation of the governor, which Republicans complained was being run by Obama supporters.
You can read more of the ADN’s love letter to Rouse here.
Please note the close ties to Kim Elton, who was point man on the bogus, and discredited Troopgate “investigation.” (Sarah calls it “Tasergate” in her book, Going Rogue, because her former brother-in-law, Trooper Mike Wooten, had tasered his stepson)
Although the witch hunt was already in motion, it’s quite obvious that once Sarah was chosen to be John McCain’s running mate, Chicago thug politics came to Alaska. Ed Morrissey wrote at the time, discussing a photo that had all of those who were ram-rodding this witch hunt, at Obama’s Alaska election headquarters:
However, it also shows that the people running the investigation are overt Obama backers, which calls into question whether they can be fair — especially with Obama’s campaign involving itself with Wooten’s union.
Team Obama certainly seems rather careless about keeping their fingerprints off of the smears, innuendo, and mudslinging. I guess they didn’t feel the media did a good enough job of it last week, and the polling numbers tend to show it.
That’s right, Obama’s crew “reached out” to the Alaska State Troopers Union, no doubt using his ties to the incredibly corrupt SEIU/ACORN cabal as his calling card. Once Obama got involved, the slime machine went into overdrive.
A lot has been written, and as we all know, the so-called Branchflower Report, which claimed Sarah had broken no laws, but “overstepped her authority” was completely and totally discredited, by independent investigator, Timothy Petumenos, who was working on behalf of the Alaska State Personnel Board.
Not only did he find that Sarah had done nothing wrong in firing Walt Monegan, an “at will” employee who served at the pleasure of the Governor, and could be fired for any reason, or none at all, he also noted that the Obama smear crew, Elton, French, and the rest, had actually cited the wrong statute in their shameless attacks.
Didn’t matter though. What Obama was looking for was an “October surprise” and he got it, as the bogus Branchflower Report was released just three days before the election. The damage was done.
For a “job well done” Barack Obama appointed Rouse’s buddy Senator Kim Elton to a make work job at the U.S. Department of the Interior. As we now know, this was the first of many such pay-play-deals the Obama regime would attempt. Think Blagojevich, Joe Sestak and Andrew Romanoff just to name a few.
Now our buddy Pete Rouse wasn’t done though. Again, Rouse is connected in Alaska. Good old Pete was charged with creating what we call Obama’s Alaska Mafia. This is a group of hate bloggers, thugs, nerdowells, and Marxist-democrat party operatives.
These hate bloggers were given access to some of the nation’s leading news organizations and told to crank out the lies, half truths, rumors, and hate. Most notably in this bunch are Jeanne Devon and Shannyn Moore, who were given access to the smut peddling Huffington Post, which Obama’s media partners often use as a “credible source.”
We’ve written extensively about the Alaska Mafia, the hatemongers, and all of the rest, so I won’t rehash, but if you’d like a good overview, and want to see the video Obama and the Mafia fought unsuccessfully to have banned, you can read a lot more here.
One other thing the team White House adviser Pete Rouse put together was tasked to do, was continually file nonsensical “ethics” charges against Governor Sarah Palin. These things were beyond insane, but then again, so are Alaska’s ethics laws. Absolutely anyone can file for just about anything. And no matter how ridiculous, the state is obligated to investigate.
Again we all know just how insane it got, as complaints were filed because Sarah was photographed holding a fish, wearing a jacket in sub-zero weather, and for receiving cookies from a group. (considered a “bribe“) There were a couple of dozens of these damned things.
Even worse, unlike almost every other state in the union, Alaska offers no protection for it’s Chief Executive Officer. In other states, the Attorney General, or someone designated, would serves as the Governor’s attorney and handle things. In Alaska, you are on your own.
As you can imagine, defending herself against this constant bombardment from Team Obama was taking a toll on the Palin Administration, Sarah and her family, and Alaska government as a whole. The goal was to bankrupt Sarah personally, completely tie up her administration, thus thwarting her aggressive agenda, and create the narrative that she was somehow “corrupt.”
Sarah is a fighter, we all know this after watching her, as a private citizen, just destroy Obama on an almost daily basis with little more that Facebook and Twitter (or “the twitters” as Obama calls it) But she is also a brilliant tactician. Sarah learned a lot as team captain on her championship winning basketball team, one of those lessons was that sometimes a player needs to pass the ball off to someone else to score. This is what Sarah would do on July 3, 2009, giving what we call her Declaration of Independence speech at her Lake Lucille home.
Some on the left love to call Sarah a “quitter” (some on the right too) but it shows their incredibly childish mentality. This was one of the most brilliant tactical moves in political history. Here are the facts:
Sarah was personally looking at a legal bill just north of a half million dollars. Her salary as Governor was $125, 000 a year. She had just turned down a big $25, 000 raise that was offered up by the Alaska legislature. (Lt Governor, now Governor Sean Parnell also rejected a raise)
Sarah’s administration was totally paralyzed, spending much of their time doing research for never ending Freedom of Information Act requests, answering bogus “ethics” charges and so on.
Most importantly, at least to Sarah, was the fact Obama’s thugs, with their jihad against her, had cost the state of Alaska (the taxpayers) over 2 million of their very hard earned dollars. As she put it at the time, this was money that couldn’t be used to build roads, schools, pay teachers, cops, firemen, whatever. Obama was stealing, through his hand picked thugs, from the Alaskan people.
For those who still don’t get it, this is why Sarah Palin “quit” being Governor Palin. Many to this day think she should have stayed and fought. To this I have to say that is some seriously flawed thinking.
One, the “ethics” complaints were never, ever gonna stop. If you remember, right after announcing her resignation, Sarah and her family, as they have done forever, went fishing. Todd and Sarah have operated a commercial fishing business for as long as they have been together. Todd grew up doing this. Anyhow, the media was going insane, and sent a bunch of folks, who would end up interviewing Sarah as she worked the nets.
After the fact, here came another “ethics” complaint, because she did the interview. There were several “ethics” complaints filed because she was simply interviewed during her time as Governor.
This is how idiotic Alaska’s ethics laws are. In my opinion, only a fool would have stayed in this situation. Better to step back a few paces, and hand the ball off to someone else, then regroup, reload, and come back twice as strong, which is exactly what she did.
As you know, Sean Parnell has been following much of Sarah’s agenda, and continuing to advance her aggressive, forward looking ideas . As we reported on Thursday, Governor Parnell just signed into law legislation that would make Sarah Palin’s goal of having Alaska get 50 percent of it’s energy from renewables, move closer to reality.
Oddly enough, even though Parnell is following the Palin Doctrine pretty well, no ethics complaints are coming his way. Could that be because Parnell isn’t a direct threat to the Obama regime, and not the odds on favorite to be the next President of the United States, as is that certain Mama Grizzly he replaced?
We think of all of the bloviating (including ours) about the brilliance of Sarah’s move, and how she absolutely blind sided the Obama regime and it’s minions, stopping them dead in their tracks, Claude Sandroff, writing for the American Thinker, may have said it best:
Virtue and Sarah Palin
No republic, not even our exceptional one, can survive without virtuous citizens.
On July 3 when Sarah Palin announced from her Wasilla home that she would step down as Governor, we got a glimpse of a person none of us had seen before: this remarkable woman, nothing less than a phenomenon, always unflappable now seemed wounded and shaken. Five simple words were particularly haunting: “…and it’s not so comfortable.”
One of the most famous women in the world, Sarah Palin relinquished state power in the simplest of settings. It was obviously not comfortable, nor easy. However we define Palin, as frontier feminist, movement conservative or middle class populist this will always stand as her finest hour.
It might not have been her finest performance, but it crystallized in a moment the very essence of virtue. It was Sir Thomas More resigning as Lord Chancellor and George Washington returning to Mount Vernon. It showed how rare virtue has become in our politics. It shows why we adore Sarah Palin and why we need her. And it explains why, even without office, she has become the most important political figure in America.
There is much more which you simply must read, here.
While still serving as Governor, many people offered to come to Sarah Palin’s aid, financial, and several unauthorized legal defense funds were started. Seeing this, an “official” fund, one that people would know was legitimate, was put together. Now this wasn’t a slapdash deal. The best legal minds were put to work creating this fund, which mirrored those used by the likes of Bill Clinton, and other noteworthy political figures.
As expected, in record time, another bogus “ethics” complaint was filed. It seems the Chicago thugs not only wanted to bankrupt the Palins, but make damned sure no one could help them out!
This of course made big news. You see, this is something else the Mafia was good at, and why the Obama regime uses them to this day. In Alaska it’s illegal to discuss or publish details of ethics complaints against public officials until after they are settled. That’s a good thing, as it negates efforts by thugs like Obama’s Mafia, and doesn’t allow them to benefit from their actions. The bad thing is, the law has absolutely no teeth. No tangible punishment for breaking this law.
With nothing to stop them, the Mafia’s network of hate bloggers already had their stories written, and within minutes of a complaint being filed, the internet was filled with many accounts of Sarah’s latest “crime against humanity.” Of course, since much of the media is little more than a stenography pool for the Obama regime, and it’s agenda, within hours, all of these reports were being broadcast worldwide as absolute fact.
Getting back to the complaint against Sarah’s legal defense fund: Pretty much everyone smelled a rat when they started looking into the so-called “independent investigator” that was chosen to look into the fund.
This so-called “independent investigator” would himself break the confidentiality laws, and announce to the world that Sarah was guilty (even though the investigation was barely started) and CNN stringer Dennis Zaki, and a couple other members of the Alaska Mafia, did him one better, telling the world a huge FBI indictment was coming. This prompted the FBI to do something it rarely does, and publicly announce that, not only was Sarah NOT about to be indicted, the FBI didn’t even have her on their radar. This was simply another lie by the hate bloggers. To this day people still think the FBI was investigating Sarah.
This “independent investigator” Thomas Daniels, has a day job. He is employed by the law firm, Perkins Coie. It just so happens that Perkins Coie is Barack Obama’s attorney as well. He’s spent millions with them. They are the ones representing him in many of the dozens of cases challenging his eligibility and legitimacy as President.
Perkins Coie is also a favorite of the DNC, and their go to guys if they absolutely, positively want to steal a close election, after the fact. They were neck deep in the Florida 2000 recount, and Al Gore’s unsuccessful bid to steal the presidency. They worked extra hard to try and have military absentee ballots disallowed on technicalities.
In 2006, Perkins Coie made headlines when it represented Salim Ahmed Hamdan, the alleged driver and bodyguard of Osama Bin Laden.
But wait, there’s more! (with this bunch there is always more) You remember Anita Dunn, our fun loving Mao worshiper and Obama’s former Communication’s Director? Well, she’s got a husband. Her husband Robert Bauer, is the Chief Counsel for the White House. Guess who Bob was working for before being picked for this post. If you said Perkins Coie, congratulations, you are beginning to understand how all of this ties together.
Michele Malkin calls Bauer Obama’s “political fixer” she has written:
Bauer is intimately familiar with electoral law, Barack Obama, ethics violations and government job-trading allegations. And he’s an old hand at keeping critics and inquisitors at bay. A partner at the prestigious law firm Perkins Coie, Bauer served as counsel to the Democratic National Committee, the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee and Obama for America. He also served as legal counsel to the George Soros-funded 527 organization
Read more here.
Ian Lazaran, writing for Conservatives 4 Palin, has a whole lot more on all of this here.
At this point, it’s well established that Obama has an entire network set up as a dirty tricks squad to go after any political opponent.
It’s also well established that members of Obama’s closest inner circle of advisers, Pete Rouse, Anita Dunn, and Bob Bauer are directly involved in the day to day smear campaign against Sarah Palin, and have been since the day she was first introduced to the American people.
Barack Obama makes Richard Nixon, and his famed “enemies list” look quite mild by comparison. The amount of effort expended by the Obama regime trying to stop Sarah Palin is not only unprecedented in American politics, but also speaks to the incredible power Sarah Palin wields.
Others may talk a good game, but Sarah Palin has been actively and effectively challenging Obama pretty much since the day after the 2008 election. As it has become more apparent what a mistake the American voters made, and the type of corrupt Chicago thug Obama is, Sarah has been relentlessly calling him out. She is really the only one with the guts to it with such gusto.
One more thing, by the virtue of her own highly successful record as Mayor, energy and environmental regulator, and Governor, as well as her strong ethics, Sarah Palin is one of the very few that have the moral authority to call Obama out.
The greatest thing about the Marxist-democrats, and their media partners, is the fact they will always tell you who they fear the most. If you notice, there is no “we must stop Mitt Romney before we all DIE” movement going on, but the Obama regime has put out an effort, the likes of which this nation has never experienced, in order to stop little old Sarah Palin from Wasilla, Alaska!
All of my bloviating brings us to this:
By now, you are hearing that Sarah has settled this complaint against her legal defense fund. We knew something was about to happen when her attorney, Thomas Van Flein, published this note on her Facebook page:
As most people know, Sarah Palin is relentlessly attacked by those who elevate the state over the individual and by those who lack faith in any higher power except the regulatory power of Washington, D.C. Many of these people use – and abuse – the law, and in the case of Sarah Palin, they have abused our state ethics laws by repeatedly, remorselessly, and routinely filing false and malicious claims against her. So too, they have resorted to our courts, where several civil suits were filed against Sarah Palin. To date, these civil suits have been rejected by the courts as baseless. But we know the toll this caused the Palins. Almost a year ago, Governor Palin pointed out the many groundless complaints, records requests and suits filed against her, and explained that:
“…it hasn’t been cheap – the State has wasted thousands of hours of your time and shelled out some two million of your dollars to respond to ‘opposition research’ – that’s money not going to fund teachers or troopers – or safer roads. And this political absurdity, the ‘politics of personal destruction’… Todd and I are looking at more than half a million dollars in legal bills in order to set the record straight. And what about the people who offer up these silly accusations? It doesn’t cost them a dime so they’re not going to stop draining public resources – spending other peoples’ money in their game…. Some Alaskans don’t mind wasting public dollars and state time. I do. I cannot stand here as your Governor and allow millions upon millions of our dollars go to waste just so I can hold the title of Governor.“
The past year has confirmed that Governor Palin was right. The number of false claims, records requests, mendacious accusations and ridiculous posturing by the left and street corner ethicists dropped dramatically – at least as applied to the mechanics of state government.
But it did not all go away when she stepped aside – some claims and suits are pending and are getting resolved in time. A judge in Anchorage recently issued a ruling throwing out a baseless claim against Governor Palin – and indirectly involving Todd Palin. In this civil claim, Todd Palin was being attacked because he was a close and trusted advisor to his wife, the Governor. That he was should surprise no one. The claimant asserted that because Todd Palin was not being paid by the State of Alaska, any emails copied to him could not be protected by the standard law of deliberative process privilege – a privilege that essentially protects the decision making process in government in order to allow the decision makers the freedom to honestly discuss policy and process and promote the open exchange of ideas. The claimant demanded the right to see emails that were sent to Todd Palin.
In a well reasoned opinion, the judge explored state law, federal law (including an historical discussion on First Lady Sarah Polk, wife of President James K. Polk), and invoked a too rarely used legal principle – common sense – to throw out this lawsuit. In so doing, the court concluded that Todd Palin, as the First Gentleman, though unpaid, was in essence a privileged consultant to the Office of the Governor, and the court compared Todd Palin’s privileged consultations to First Lady Hillary Clinton, in which a federal court determined that the chief executive’s spouse “acts as the functional equivalent of an assistant to the President.” And, with state government employees assisting the first spouse, Todd Palin had a clear and obvious privileged consultative function and is analogous to a de facto state officer.
The court ultimately concluded that “common sense and Federal law” compel the conclusion that “Todd Palin could properly… act as an advisor to the Governor” and therefore he was appropriately involved in policy discussions, emails, and deliberative discussions, all of which are protected from disclosure.
It is refreshing to see a court resort to common sense and historical precedent. Further, as more and more women get elected to high office (What are they called now? – “Mama Grizzlies“?), it is notable that challenges such as this, which were based on sexist notions and demeaning attitudes towards women, are being rejected. This suit challenged Todd Palin’s role as a first spouse and was implicitly premised on the idea that a male spouse must somehow exert too much influence over a female chief executive. Hence the demand to “see those emails” from Todd Palin; but contrast this with decades of silence relative to communications to prior executive spouses – female spouses. That dismissive and contemptuous posture towards the new brand of feminist leaders was appropriately condemned by the court as lacking a basis in reality.
You can read more here.
This was followed by a statement from Meg Stapleton:
First off, let’s keep in mind that this is about a legal defense fund. According to the Summary of Findings in the decision released today by the Alaska Personnel Board, nothing illegal and nothing unethical occurred because not a penny has been distributed. Governor Palin did nothing wrong. And in fact, everyone is in agreement that Governor Palin acted in good faith. Now, let me explain how we got here.
It is no secret that Governor Palin has been subject to political and legal attacks on an unprecedented scale. Since these attacks originate from her opposition, sometimes it can be a badge of honor to be the focus of such irrational hatred. But there is a cost to all of this.
Last year, those who willfully and excitedly violated or abused Alaska law showed they would do it again and again to either bankrupt Governor Palin or paralyze her success for Alaska. Governor Palin had a choice: plead guilty to things she didn’t do so that she could focus on the state and save money for the family – or defend her good name and reputation. She chose to fight back. In the end, Governor Palin and her attorney, Thomas Van Flein, successfully defended against well over two dozen complaints, lawsuits, and allegations. Time and time again during and after the 2008 Presidential election cycle, independent investigators proved that Governor Palin’s actions were sound, her judgment was proper, and her intentions were honest. In fact, the Personnel Board, the ethics board for the Governor of the state, never even had to take up a case as each was dismissed before making it to the next level.
But it did cost the Palins financially.
Seeing this nonsense, it was suggested to me from both sides of the aisle that one way to deal with the substantial financial cost these tactics were inflicting, was to create a trust fund for legal fees – just like all the other legal defense funds for prominent politicians who are targets.
As reported in the Wall Street Journal, “Such funds have become increasingly common as scrutiny of politicians has intensified.” (“Palin Backers Set Up Legal-Defense Fund“, Wall Street Journal, p. A-3, April 24, 2009)
When I approached Governor Palin with the idea, she had one primary directive – if it can be done lawfully, then I will support it. She also asked that, if possible, we keep it Alaskan.
One might think that creating a trust fund to collect money to pay legal fees should not be that complicated, but it turns out, it is exceptionally complicated. You should know that as many as seven lawyers were involved in the process; some of whom were and are nationally prominent experts in creating legal defense funds, in evaluating federal and state election laws, state trust law, federal and state tax laws, state reporting requirements and state ethics requirements. It is a sad commentary on public life today when the legal system can be used as a political weapon against an elected official, and it takes a battalion of lawyers to figure out how to fund a defense and counter-attack.
In any event, the legal team concluded that the fund they had created was lawful in all respects. I relied in good faith on that advice and advised Governor Palin of that advice.
Ultimately, the Alaska Fund Trust was borne, and within a day or two, a complaint was filed against it challenging its legality. (And like everything else, the public knew because someone – likely the complainant – violated the law and publicly released the accusation.) And so started another prolonged legal battle – this time to determine if the legal fund created to defend Governor Palin against frivolous ethics complaints was itself ethical. Quite a circle really. We made it clear that no money would be paid out on until the matter had been resolved.
Thus, to this very moment, the money received was frozen and no one, not the Palins, not the Palins’ attorney, no one ever received a penny from the Trust on the Palins’ behalf.
The Personnel Board initially appointed an “independent” investigator. That investigator, we later learned, had connections with, and was associated with President Obama. The Personnel Board had hired President Obama’s personal law firm as an “independent” investigator to review whether a fund created to raise money to eliminate a debt incurred as a result of Governor Palin’s opposition to President Obama was appropriate. We objected to both the illegal leak and the blatant political influence, and a new investigator was appointed.
The new investigator spent considerable time reviewing the old information and collecting new, but I think it proved to be too difficult to reverse an already-public decision. He concluded that the Trust fund violated Alaska law in two respects. His biggest heartburn was that we used the word “official” on the website. And he was distressed that we turned down an offer from a former White House Special Counsel to serve as trustee and instead chose an Alaskan whom Alaskans would recognize – Kristan Cole.
Kristan sat on several state boards as a volunteer public servant. The investigator concluded that because she sat on such boards, Governor Palin as governor was technically her boss, and therefore she should not be the trustee of the fund. That is his conclusion and we respect that. The law is not clear on this aspect, and not one member of the legal team saw this as an issue, but again, we respect the conclusion here and it is not worth the time or money to dispute that. But we do want to thank Kristan for taking on that otherwise thankless task. What is it they say about no good deed?
The other conclusion needs context. There was a point where it appeared that people around the country wanted to start legal defense funds for Governor Palin. The support and good will the people of this country have shown to the Palins is inspiring. But a concern was raised whether all these other potential funds would comply with various laws, including donation limits, limits against contributions from lobbyists or contributions from foreign nationals. So we used the word “official” in the website to distinguish the Alaska Fund Trust from ones we were not sure would be compliant. In our view, that was a solid and common sense reason to use the word “official,” but the investigator believes that it made it appear that the website was sponsored by the State of Alaska, and thus would be a use of Governor Palin’s “official” office to raise money. We are not terribly persuaded that really would be the case or that any member of the public could be confused, but we respect the investigator’s evaluation of this point and it is not worth fighting about. Again, Governor Palin’s prime directive was simple – if this fund could be set up lawfully, she would support it. If not, it would not have her support.
So Governor Palin has reached a point where she decided to agree to resolve this matter with the investigator rather than spend time and money fighting an ethics complaint about a fund that was created to reimburse her for the money she has spent fighting bogus ethics complaints drawn up by insiders and outsiders violating and abusing Alaska law. Really, this is simple pragmatism and common sense.
As you know, we love a good fight, but we must pick our battles carefully. As a chief executive, Governor Palin makes the calls, and she knows that this battle, though important to her personally, does nothing for the country. She has bigger battles to fight, battles to restore our strength internationally and stand by our allies, battles to stop the downward slide of our economy, and battles to take back control of Congress.
However, I know and you know that no public official should ever have to bear the financial brunt of these attacks. And Governor Palin can lawfully raise money now through a brand new – not official but let’s call it “real” – legal defense fund without any risk of offending an investigator or state law. And such a fund now exists at http://www.sarahpalinlegaldefensefund.org/donate.php.
Thanks to everyone who contributed to the Alaska Fund Trust. Your heart was in the right place. And Governor Palin and her family have been overwhelmed by your generosity. If you want to, you can contribute to the new fund. In the meantime, we will try to contact you to get your donation returned from the old trust.
Now – back to motherhood for me! And common sense.
P.S. One last thought as we approach the anniversary of Governor Palin’s “reloading,” thank God she had the fortitude and wisdom to look down the road and see what she did – the state’s bills would have amounted to millions upon millions more and her personal legal bills would be personally insurmountable. I don’t know who would want to hold office under these circumstances and with loopholes our Alaska legislators refuse to close.
- Meghan Stapleton, Mom, Wife, and Now More Knowledgeable Than Ever About Legal Defense Funds
Now the left is already crowing about the “great victory” over their bête noire. But after all of their efforts, an entire year’s worth of lying, scheming, and plotting, what the hell have they won?
The new independent investigator had to really dig into the minutia of the law to come up with something to say that the legal defense fund violated the law.
When you are down to the fact the word “official” was used in the description as a basis to call something illegal, you are truly grasping at straws!
The investigator admits that Sarah Palin acted in good faith, and had no intention of violating the law. In other words, she did nothing wrong. End of story right there.
Of course, that’s not the end of the story. What the left doesn’t seem to get, is every time they attack Sarah Palin, it backfires on them, big time! You just KNOW that if the Obama regime could put the genie back in the bottle, and travel back in time, they would have left Governor Sarah Palin alone to do her job.
In all of their unprecedented efforts to destroy Sarah Palin’s political career, and Sarah personally, they have actually enhanced it all. She is more powerful and more consequential as a private citizen, than she would have ever been as Governor of Alaska. She’s also free to go after Obama and other enemies of Liberty and Freedom, with full force.
By stealing millions of Alaskan taxpayer dollars through their thuggery, and forcing Sarah to make the incredibly tough decision to hand the ball off to Sean Parnell in July of last year, they unleashed a wildcat, or should I say a Mama Grizzly.
Maybe we should say the left unleashed Sarahcuda.
Back when Sarah Palin was the captain of her championship basketball team, she was given the nickname “Sarah Barracuda” I did a little looking into the characteristics of the barracuda, especially their feeding habits, this is what I found:
To become a successful feeder, the barracuda developed a technique of racing through a school of fish with its blade like teeth attacking the helpless fish. After it injures and immobilizes some of the fish, the barracuda returns to snatch them up. It’s clear that barracuda have truly honed their predatory skills. Often, in fact, barracudas use their highly evolved instincts to take advantage of the disorder that occurs around dusk, when the nighttime fish switch places with the daytime fish. It is at this time, when their prey least expects it, that barracuda make their attack.
Of course, in this little metaphor, the “helpless fish” is Barack Obama and the rest of the Marxist-democrat party. For almost two years now Sarah Palin has been taking Obama on and inflicting many injuries to his agenda, and those of his boss, George Soros. Little by little, taking him down.
Many people keep counting her out, but when they least expect it, her she comes, and when she shows up, she plays hard.
When the original defense fund was set up, Sarah and her people were well aware they would be attacked almost immediately, so they put in all kinds of restrictions on who could donate, and how much. In fact, the maximum amount anyone was allowed to donate was equal to what one would spend on dinner for two at an upscale eatery, with possibly a movie afterward.
Now one can donate any amount they desire, up to a $13,500 maximum.
Sarah’s original fund raised close to a half million dollars in incredibly small amounts. As Meg Stapleton noted all of those donations will be returned under the settlement, however, a totally unscientific observation, made by reading hundreds of comments from supporters on Conservative blogs, reveals that most can’t wait to receive their refund, so they can turn around and send it to the new fund, along with a healthy addition.
In other words, a years worth of Chicago style thuggery has been an Epic Fail!
Take time to visit Sarah’s new fund’s website www.sarahpalinlegaldefensefund.org and help Sarah cover the costs of Obama’s attacks against her.
Much like Lincoln said of Ulysses S. Grant, we can’t afford to lose this woman, she fights!