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Monday, July 28, 2008

Palin's approval ratings still sky-high

A poll conducted last week by the Hays Research Group shows that Gov. Palin's approval rating is still an astronomical 80%!

So much for the thoroughly debunked "Troopergate scandal". That horse is dead, so we're going to stop beating it.

62 comments:

Anonymous said...

This confirms what I suspected would happen. Short of evidence that Palin, her family, or another governor's office/dept. person actually requesting that Wooten be "fired", Sarah is still VERY popular.

This is not really big enough to be a full scandal, but really helps Sarah get some more experience in the bare-knuckling brawls of Alaska politics. It's looking like she already has enough.

Does anyone still think she would not be a an exiting VP pick? Heck, the whole government, family, etc. would be a dynamite TV series.

Palin and the rest of the USA would hit it off from day 1.

Anonymous said...

Panel OKs probe of Monegan firing

By WESLEY LOY

(07/28/08 14:56:59)
Legislators have just approved hiring a special investigator to look into the firing of Walt Monegan from his job as commissioner of public safety.

Meeting in Juneau this afternoon, the Legislative Council voted 12-0 to spend up to $100,000 "to investigate the circumstances and events surrounding the termination of former Public Safety Commissioner Monegan and potential abuses of power and or improper action by members of the executive branch."

www.adn.com/news/alaska/story/477760.html

Anonymous said...

That probe will end up being a good thing for Palin. Monegan will end up looking like an idiot and/or union hack, while Palin will be able to use this opportunity to get more of the facts out.

And if they decide to talk to Wooten... his craziness will only help Palin even more.

Dave ll said...

"And if they decide to talk to Wooten... his craziness will only help Palin even more."

That is..if they can find him and bring him back. SOMEBODY obviouly thought it would be better if he was out of the country...propably so he WOULDN'T have to testify under oath. His absence only makes the whole case against Palin much weaker...not better. If he does show up, maybe we'll get an explanation about who paid for his trip and why...but I won't hold my breath!

Anonymous said...

yes, I think the investigation sooner is better than later. may be why McCain is holding off on his announcement. and btw, 100K isn't a lot of money for an investigation, so they must not be expecting much

Ted said...

Seems to me McCain is holding up on his announcement waiting for the Alaska Senate to act on approving (which is very likely) the Alaska House's vote last week to go ahead on the Palin recommended TransCan licensure of the recommended Natural Gas Pipeline under the Palin sponsored and state legislature passed AGIA (Alaska Gas Inducement Act) program, which must occur by August 2. Coming off that good news, seems THAT's when McCain would name Palin, still several days to a week before the August 8 Olympics. I don't think it has anything to do with Wootengate investigation.

Anonymous said...

Wootengate makes picking Palin impossible. It's not because I think she's guilty of something. Monegan has zero credibility because his lies started with his recollection of how many times he met with the governor. And, Wooten pretty much is the scum of the earth. If anything, the investigation should encompass consideration as to how a person like that is an Alaska state trooper. At the same time, in politics, especially when dealing with dems and a media that fawns all over Obama, guilt or innocence is of little consequence when an accusation will suffice. Most people would get the situation if they heard the whole story, but they won't hear the whole story. Much as I'd like to see things otherwise, I fail to see how this doesn't end the Palin speculation.

Ted said...

Slight correction, AGIA, that's the "Alaska Gasline Inducement Act" and read this very positive report from today on this Palin initiative:
http://www.gulfnews.com/business/Oil_and_Gas/10232508.html

Ted said...

anonymous, "wootengate end Palin speculation"???!!!???

First, it's more than speculation.

Second, you must be kidding!

Anonymous said...

No, Ted, I'm not kidding, and it doesn't please me to say it.

Again, it's not a question of guilt or innocence for me. It's a question of the hatchet job that will come from it.

Then again, the come back could include a verbal indictment of Monehan's credibility (which, to be polite, is lacking) and something along the lines of "now the Dems are defending a guy who would tase a 10 year old".

Don't get me wrong: I'm not worried about her being innocent. I am worried about a biased "independent investigation" and a hatchet job from the press.

Then again, that really does open up an interesting angle, the idea that Palin legitimately could claim publicly for all female voters that the Obamaites and their media hacks are doing another Hillary style hatchet job.

Look, I have no problem with the pick. In a way, this investigation is kind of the "is that the best you've got" kind of thing for me.

But, it's not about me. It's not about you. It's about McCain, who I just don't think has the stones when it comes to this type of thing (I'm fairly certain that his advisers don't).

Bob said...

ted, where do you get this idea that mccain has basically chosen her and now its just a matter of time when he announces her. with all due respect, what world are you living in, this is politics. as much as i want palin, she is now going to be investigated. investigations take a long time. even if mccain wanted her, he can't risk it. this is why vp are vetted. don't you get it, its over. just horrible luck.

Anonymous said...

My point, exactly, Bob. I think that it stinks. And, part of me thinks that the image of her answering questions on the national stage would work to her advantage (because of Monegan's credibility and Wooten's character and because of the image of women seeing a hatchet job on another woman running against the messiah). But, that's not how John McCain thinks. This is how John McCain thinks (more stuff on Pawlenty being his call, which I can see no matter how completely uninspiring the pick is): http://www.stoptheaclu.com/archives/2008/07/28/vice-president-rumors-galore/

Anonymous said...

I don't think it is over, but we may see a delay.

Interesting that Dick Morris said on TV tonight that Obama is having trouble attracting women 40 and older. Morris said it makes it more likely that McCain picks a woman and they mentioned I think K. Hutchison and Palin.

The investigation of Palin is really minor and won't amount to anything but it just might tip McCain to play it safe, which is the last thing I'm thinking if I'm 76 years old and on my way out in less than 10 years. He needs to do something great before he leaves this world. Go down swinging in a flurry of vetoes like the Seige of Vienna against the Turks. And top it off with a woman Veep. He'll be written up good in the history books. :)

Frankly, if McCain picks Palin, I don't see how the Dems can attack her on this. It will look like another Hillary smear campaign and if Obama picks a man, women will be pissed if they perceive an unfair attack on Palin like the hit they pulled on Hillary.

Ted said...

If, as you say, McCain doesn't have the "stones" to pick Palin, he's missing more than stones. Palin IS the "safest" VP pick to assure McCain's win in November. At the same time, Palin will doubly benefit McCain because she'll SEEM the "boldest" pick.

Anonymous said...

Ted, I'm not questioning your opinion. I agree with it here. But, I have my doubts about McCain. As the other anon said, it's really much ado about nothing and would look like a smear job in general and given the specifics of the situation. That's how I see it too. I just question whether McCain (and especially the idiots running his campaign) would see it similarly.

BigRob-68 said...

Respectfully, the whole Wooten episode is similar to other "politics as usual" in most every state. The idea that any living, breathing politician holds office without having to face down a disgruntled bureaucrat, partisan opposition, or the fourth estate's desire to create a story in order to sell newspapers is a fantasy. Palin's chances are excellent. Did it not occur to anyone that it is better to have this absurdity vetted before the October surprise that will come for Mac and Obama? Relax folks, Palin will be just fine.

Bob said...

It will be Pawlenty. And that is not a prediction. That's a fact. It's not a matter of whether he is better than Palin either. There is no debate about that. The rumors from reputable sources are coming in...

Adam Brickley, aka "ElephantMan" said...

Anonymous,

The thing about Wootengate is that it is so patently manufactured that it actually makes Palin look better if played right. Think about it this way:

McCain picks Palin, the Obama camps siezes on Wooten and Monegan, then the Mac campaign throws all of the documentation on the table showing that Monegan is a liar and Wooten is...well...Wooten. It's a booby trap, and either the Obama people will be smart enough to avoid it or they will end up with a large amount of egg on thier face (my preferred option). This is exactly why the national media has not picked up the story, because it's the type of news that blows up in your face if you try a hatchet job.

The allegations are so patently false that they should not get in the way. Palin is also cooperating fully with the investigation becasue there's nothing there. I'm pretty wure that she will come out of this looking better than when she came in.

Bob said...

adam, do you really think that mccain has time for these games. come on, you are beginning to sound like a conspiracy theorist. the man is busy running for president. not the intracies of the plan you have invented in your mind. and i say this with all due respect.

TC said...

Bob...those same reputable sources were saying only 2 weeks ago that it was Romney...and now its Pawlenty. I have a strange feeling it will be someone the media hasn't talked about.

Truth is, the only people that REALLY know aren't talking, and those that are, probably are being paid by the campaigns to spread names just to get a feel.

Dr. Vicki said...

EVERY person in office that's done anything has been accused of something. McCain has been accused of being involved in sweet deals. He's been around long enough to know people go after you no matter what. Every one of these vp picks have questionable stuff. There has been no mention of Palin's troubles on the national news, because for all of these local guys, it doesn't hit the national stage until they do. No matter who McCain picks, something will be drudged up. He will go with who he wants to go with. I think if he's wanting Palin, they'll wait until the convention, see if anything will come of the investigation. But who knows. At least he'd get some press.

TC said...

I'm surprised no one has brought this up, but Pawlenty caught a lot, I mean a lot of flack for the I-35 bridge collapse. Call me crazy, but that's a little more serious than firing a bad employee.

I can see the future Obama ad... "Pawlenty wants to build bridges when he can't even maintain them."

Palin for America said...

Yeah Pawlenty would be a great choice.

Although, if you think the issue with trooper Wooten is tough (which it isn't), how about the I35 bridge collapse which killed 13 people and injured around 100? The bridge that was maintained by by the Minnesota Dept. of Transportation? The bridge that Governor Pawlenty knew needed to be replaced:

In 2005, the bridge was again rated as "structurally deficient" and in possible need of replacement, according to the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Bridge Inventory database. Problems were noted in two subsequent inspection reports. The inspection carried out June 15, 2006 found problems of cracking and fatigue. On August 2, 2007, Governor Pawlenty stated that the bridge was scheduled to be replaced in 2020.

Further:
In internal Mn/DOT documents, bridge officials talked about the possibility of the bridge collapsing and worried that it might have to be condemned.

Even more interesting:
http://www.time.com/time/politics/article/0,8599,1736659,00.html

And still more infrastructure problems in Minn:
http://www.twincities.com/ci_10007801?IADID

Dr. Vicki said...

Exactly. Every one of these guys have skeletons in their closet. Which would play to the media worse? A negligent guy who let a bridge kill a bunch of people or a governor who pressured an employee to be fired who drank in his patrol car, tasered a kid, and threated to murder her dad? So she fires the guy who won't get rid of him? A lot of people would sympathize with Palin. No one would sympathize with Pawlenty over not seeing that something got done about the bridges.

Night Owl said...

I'm feeling pretty discouraged by the lack of positive press lately. :( I really hope I'm wrong, but I have not been getting a good vibe.

Whatever happens, I hope that the effort to promote Palin does not end and that we set our sights on 2012!

Anonymous said...

Tonight on Lary King, McCain said; "adding that both men and women are being considered."

Ted said...

Associated Press (AP), on behalf of Team Obama, now in full throttle attack against the "mad at Monegan" Palin firing -- now in a million newspapers across America (as if people in Podunk even heard of Palin yet alone were interested in the Alaska legislature's call for investigation of this 'very very very important nationwide matter').

This but proves one thing: PALIN IS THE GREATEST THREAT TO THE DEMOCRATS IN NOVEMBER, BAR NONE!!! The AP and Team Obama MUST take her out for them to prevail!

Attention Team McCain, Palin IS your arsenal for victory in November!

Ted said...

And note the way the AP story is repeatedly identified via google "news" in those AP- newspaper accounts (identical story) across the country:

"Sarah Palin abused her power in firing a public safety commissioner. Lawmakers say they want to know whether Palin was mad at former commissioner Walt ..."


Do you pick up the double standard sexist 'out-of-control' female overtones: "Sarah abused her power" "She was mad at"

Ted said...

I don't mean to sound presumptuous on behalf of Adam, but I bet McCain is reading this website (and Palin too). Check this out -- read it carefully:

http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/07/28/MNQS120PDK.DTL

Ted said...

Adam, last Friday you posted the following:

"Next week should be much more fun, with the gasline due to come to a vote in the Senate. Also, I've about had it with the Alaskan media's refusal to publish key facts regarding the Halcro/Monegan/Wooten circus, so it might be time to start holding their feet to the fire. Any suggestions?"

Now I know you currently want to stop beating the deadhorse of the Monegan thing, but here IS a SUGGESTION, and it relates primarily not to the Monegan aspect but to a now "NATIONAL MEDIA CIRCUS (and BIAS)" aspect.

Do a google "news" search, including duplicates with the words "Palin abused her power in firing." At last count, you'll find no less than 73 separate entries of the identical AP story (all accross media land). And of course, the piece leaves the impression of a "mad" Palin, without, of course, mentioning Wooten's actions and threats etc., or any aspect painting a fair background for Palin.

Adam, here's the angle, why oh why is the NATIONAL (left/Dem/Obama-supporting biased main stream media) ALL OVER THIS???!!!???

As I said before, this confirms that Palin IS the #1 threat for the Dems, and also confirms, as Rush Limbaugh has repeatedly said, AP is really the last largest untouched media bias abuser.

So, here's the story: it's not the Monegan thing. It's the desparation actions of a biased MSM to endeavor to take Palin down -- either blowing up a local story otherwise of no interest nationally OR conmfirming that Palin INDEED IS A NATIONAL FIGURE (otherwise the story is completely of no interest to 73 different news outlets all across America).

And, finally, I do believe Palin's Monegan timing on this is directly related to her being named Veep -- getting it out BEFORE not AFTER she's named VP! And, if this is the biggest Palin 'scandal', the Dems and their MSM-allies really have nothing against Palin.

Anonymous said...

Adam, as the anon to whom you replied, let me tell you what I told Ted: I agree with you. And, I agree with the spin that could work. Neither is the real question, though. The real question is McCain, who I just think will see this and be sufficiently scared by the idea that there are accusations. It's absurd. I agree. But, it's McCain.

Ted said...

anonymous, if your characterization of McCain is correct (and I certainly don't think it is), then McCain is neither politically savvy enough nor smart enough, generally, to be President of the United States!

Anonymous said...

Ted, I call it a lack of trust in the saavy of McCain's advisers and their collective lack of imagination. I want him to pick Sarah. It makes sense on so many levels. I hope that I'm off on my thoughts about McCain.

Kristofer said...

I really believe we need to drop this "Monegan" issue.

The Alaska state Constitution allows Governor Palin to hire and fire any comissioner she chooses. In fact, she does now have to provide a reason at all.

This is not an issue and no-one cares. The only reason why it is making news, is because a blogger linked it to a dirty cop and abuse of a child and wife.

I think those of us who blog tend to take cyber stories too seriously. We need to step back and take a breather.

We should move on, as it is not an issue.

Barry Obama and John McCain have so many lobbyists on their campaign, the Palin issue means nothing.

Let us be serious.

flapper said...

It's disappointing to find out that the media in Alaska are just as liberal as anywhere else in America.

I saw where one of the TV stations had a "poll" where the majority of respondents thought there was wrongdoing on Palin's part. Given her approval rating, I'm guessing that wasn't a random sampling of Alaskans. lol

Ginger said...

Sen Ted Stevens indicted on corruption charges. Any thoughts?

flapper said...

Speaking of the liberal media, did anybody else happen to catch the Today Show this morning? They had a story on the Veep searches, and they had 7 GOP contenders on the screen. SEVEN.

No mention of Palin.

Every other VP candidate who's even remotely in the mix has gotten a decent amount of MSM coverage.

Palin is McCain's best chance to win, and they know it.

Ted said...

kristofer, I'm relaying the Monegan issue not as a Monegan issue, BUT AS A MEDIA ISSUE, now, as a media story being run precisely BEYOND THE BLOGS by the AP piece already on more than 75 TV etc. sites, outlets and publications, all across America. That spreading of this -- as you correctly say non-story that "no one cares" -- AS A NATIONAL STORY BY THE AP, is a STORY IN ITSELF!!!

And, what does it say that the AP is doing this? Do people in Podunk really care. I agree they don't. But the AP and all the media outlets strangely are running it all around the country. This very spreading by the MSM IS the story, that is, the spreading of what is a non or only local story. Why? I think we know why. Sarah Palin IS either a (1) national figure or (2) she's a national threat to the Dems and the Dem-allied MSM!

Ted said...

ginger, I think the Ted Stevens corruption charges RIGHT AT THIS TIME precisely and exactly is to try an taint Palin somehow.

We all know here, that the precise opposite is the case since Palin ran AGAINST corruption and the old line GOP, however, this indictment (and news conference coming) is a desparate move to try and tie in Palin, Alaska, big oil, corruption, etc. to the uninformed (or MSM-uninformed) public.

This only reinforces what's been said before, Palin IS the BIG THREAT to the Dems (and MSM). They sense and know that with Palin there's a new day dawning on both moribund McCain campaign and the GOP. They know, Palin is a transforming figure ala Reagan.

(and I really don't think I'm overstating this)

Dave II said...

Wow! Big news from Alaska right now...

Ted Stevens indicted on 7counts!

May help Palin in two ways...takes the focus off the Moneghan firing and puts it on Alaska and its past corruption.

Palin will should come out looking as a fighter against the corruption in the state. Let's hope.

http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=D927L2801&show_article=1

http://www.politico.com/blogs/thecrypt/0708/Ted_Stevens_indicted.html

Ted said...

Daily Kos instantly, right out of the box, reporting on Stevens vis a vis Palin and the Monegan 'scandal' which Daily Kos calls "large" and "looming" (This is getting hysterically comical):

Daily Kos says:
"the [GOP} can replace Stevens if he withdraws within 48 days of the general election. That would be sometime mid-September. Only problem for the GOP -- they've got no one clean in the state. The Palin abuse-of-power scandal looms even larger today."

TC said...

The investigation will turn out to have been nothing but a witch hunt, and a waste of taxpayer money. Mark my words, it will the legislators of Alaska that will have to worry once this is over.

I think Ted Stevens will face mounting calls to resign, and it wouldn't suprise me if Gov. Palin comes out in the next few days and suggests it. Question is, who does she appoint to replace him? There are only 2 really clean politicans in Alaska...her and Sean Parnell. Unless they can find someone else, you think she'd appoint herself?

Anonymous said...

This is great news for Palin since she indirectly helped to take out Stevens. This reinforces her credentials as a corruption fighter.

That's our girl!

(Oh, and this may take attention away from that other investigation)

I don't agree with Ted that there is an integrated effort to attack Palin, but I do believe now that the DailyKos is deathly afraid of her and everybody already knows that the AP is leftist. I think each of the leftist elements of the MSM is realising the threat that Palin poses to Obama becoming President.

Think of it like this: Imagine you are a MSM person who comes across Sarah Palin's story like we did. Imagine them thinking they wish she were a Dem, and then physically slapping themselves out of it and saying to themselves, "I'm a Democrat. I'm a Democrat. Change we can believe in, change we can believe in.....aaaaahhhhh!"

It's hilarious.

When questioned about Stevens, Palin just needs to stress openness of government, fighting corruption, and of course her move to endorse an independent investigation. Does anybody think Murkowski would have been pushing for an independent investigation if he laid off his head of DPS? I doubt it.

Ted said...

anonymous, OK, let me put it this way. The Democrats are desperate and flaying around, so the Stevens indictment is at least an effort to muddy up the Alaska and GOP waters, for its media impact (to detract from or muss up the Palin appearance), at the PRECISE TIME when McCain would be announcing Palin -- which I believe is the end of this week or start of next, depending on when the Alaska Senate approves the natural gas pipeline license (and, of course, before the Olympics).

TC said...

I expect Obama to announce Tim Kaine as his VP this week (like, I literally be shocked if he doesn't), so McCain will probably make his announcement either right after or next week.

Kristofer said...

Ted,

Please stop talking about Monegan.

Ted said...

tc, I'm wondering, it would seem McCain normally want to go before Obama on the Veep announcement. Obama knows it. Obama also knows that McCain must wait for the Alaska Senate approval on the natural gas pipeline, so you may very well be right, Obama moves swiftly now, before the Alaska Senate approval, to go first and try to steal some thunder from McCain when Palin is announced. This going first does seem to give a sense of leading (rather than following) -- so I guess Team Obama's move now quickly on a VP or Kane is understandable.

Ted said...

kristofer, again, I was reporting on the AP's nationwide story on it, so we're apprised of what the MSM is doing in anticipation of Palin -- or else the MSM wouldn't be doing it on what otherwise, I agree, is a minor or local story or non-story.

Anonymous said...

http://blogs.wsj.com/washwire/2008/07/29/alaska-sen-stevens-indicted-on-7-criminal-counts/?mod=googlenews_wsj

TC said...

Well Ted, the word from the campaign has always been "We'll let Obama go first." when it comes to VP selection

Ted said...

Palin moving up on intrade.
Romney and Pawlenty down.

Anonymous said...

FACT: For the first time since the Sheffield impeachment hearings in the early 1980's, the Alaska legislature has appointed a special investigator to look into charges of official misconduct by Governor Sarah Palin.

This is a BIG deal.

Anonymous said...

Anon, if they really cared, they would have not given a budget of 100k. That is peanuts.

Anonymous said...

And if they find anything, more money can be allocated. I'm in Alaska. I watch Gavel to Gavel. I heard my legislator speak.

Like anon wrote, this is a BIG deal.

Syrin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dr. Vicki said...

There is no real recourse even if she did can him because of her brother in law. Alaska, like my state of Arkansas, is an at will employer. That means she can tank him even if she doesnt like the way he parts his hair. So it would be impossible to pin any kind of illegal action on her. How would you "prove" that it was the BIL issue? Basically, you cannot. Secondly, even if there was plenty of evidence suggesting that was part of her motive, it just doesn't look so great. All they could do is say "bad girl". There's nothing they could indict her for, no crime. It would just be a perception issue. And given her BIL's background, most sane people are wondering why the guy can drive around with a loaded gun as it is. I just don't think this is a big deal. All of these guys have flies in their soup.
I think the Stevens flap really helps Palin because it is actually something that is ILLEGAL. Not just something that could be viewed as inappropriate. It is very clearn that Palin and Stevens are not chummy. I think it helps her.

Anonymous said...

The issue is not Wooten it is the inappropriate use of power by the governor, her family and her administration.

Anonymous said...

Syrin,

I'll put down $1,000 of my hard-earned money up against yours and bet you that Palin is NOT convicted from this investigation.

So, you up for it?

Your pal,

Sapwolf

Dr. Vicki said...

Right. Inappropriate, but nothing illegal. It would be an ethical issue, not a legal issue. One thing about this that hasn't been discussed much is that it is a "once removed" issue. The claim is not that Palin fired Wooten, but that Palin fired Monegan because he didn't fire Wooten. That's a bit of a stretch isn't it? And even if she did fire him because he didn't fire Wooten, what is wrong with her saying she fired him because he refused to significantly discipline members of his force who displayed illegal and unethical behavior.

Anonymous said...

How is a Governor firing a state employee an abuse of power? Monegan was doing nothing about a dangerous man under his authority, and so he was replaced. It seems to me that Governor Palin showed good judgement, and what I just described is the worse-case scenario. Palin's administration itself denies that problems with Wooten had anything to do with Monegan's firing - and the facts seem to uphold that. After all, if these incidents were what triggered the Governor's action, isn't it several years late? The allegations against Wooten are several years old!

Anonymous said...

78% of 414 may be stretching it a bit, don't you think?
They haven't called me or anyone else I know.
After she screws up the state with AGIA and wastes 500 million, take another poll.........

Ted said...

FROM THE ANCHORAGE DAILY NEWS, which should put an END to "troopergate" ONCE AND FOR ALL!!!


"Issue's not why Monegan was fired, but why trooper wasn't

ELISE PATKOTAK
COMMENT

(07/29/08 23:20:50)
They called Ronald Reagan the Teflon president. I think we should start calling Sarah Palin the Teflon governor. Based on people's reaction to the recent dustup over the dismissal of Walt Monegan, I'd say the lady would pretty much have to pile up more indictments than all our current politicians combined before people would start to seriously question her.

This is going to make some people absolutely nuts. Unfortunately, for those seeking to find some dirt that will stick and bring down her still astronomically favorable ratings, this current dustup is probably not the ticket they are seeking. Firing someone who is a political appointment is done all the time. Since losing your job is a common experience for most of us, the termination of a commissioner is just not something that gets people's dander up.

Of course, the idea that no one should be fired for refusing to cave in to pressure to circumvent state personnel rules is pretty much a no brainer, assuming the allegations are true.

Except in this case, the employee being discussed is a trooper who carries a gun and the force of law based on the authority given to him by, ultimately, us. He also happens to be an employee who somehow managed to Taser his 11-year-old stepson and get away with it.

The limp explanation that he was trying to show the young man how it felt is simply stupid and an insult to any thinking, reasonable adult. Assuming we want the people we authorize to carry guns and use them in our name to be adults, he should have found a much, much better way to get this lesson across.

In fact, his actions went beyond stupid and, for many of us, straight into the realm of criminal. I've had parents on my caseload whose kids would have been permanently removed from them if we'd gone to court with that.

So this particular trooper is probably not the poster boy the anti-Palin folks might want to trot out to show her misusing her power as governor. At least, the people I've talked to all seem to shake their heads and say that yeah, if she did exert pressure, she shouldn't have. And then they look up and say, "But man, what about that trooper!" They zip right past her possible actions and land squarely on the trooper. The minute the story reaches the point where he's Tasering his stepson, people start lining up behind Palin. Because most people don't want Mike Wooten to be the trooper responding to their call for help if this is any indication of his ability to make sound or reasonable judgments. And that seems to trump any inappropriate actions on her part as the focal part of the story.

It's becoming glaringly evident that public opinion is on Palin's side insofar as they wish this man had lost his job as a trooper somewhere between taking a moose illegally, drinking in a trooper vehicle and Tasering his stepson. And they wonder why the state troopers tolerate this behavior in their ranks.

Monegan was right to not cave if the alleged pressure was there from the administration to intervene in a personnel matter that had already been resolved internally, as insulting as that minimal response seems to be. While the legal right and wrong of the matter might ultimately break toward Monegan and against Palin, it will probably only make her a more sympathetic character, as people side with the person who tried to rid the troopers of someone who seems questionable at best as trooper material.

Let's think about this. He was stopped in his vehicle after a bartender called troopers to say he thought Wooten might be driving drunk. The trooper who stopped him admitted to smelling booze on his breath but made the decision that he didn't need to take a Breathalyzer because Wooten didn't seem drunk. Raise your hand if you think that trooper would not have given you a Breathalyzer test under the same circumstances. Yep, as I suspected, not a hand in sight.

Which brings us to the point most people are at. Palin isn't their problem. A state trooper agency that thinks this man should still be wearing a badge is."