Todd Palin will take written questions on 'troopergate'

Anchorage Daily NewsOctober 7, 2008 

Todd Palin will answer a series of questions from a legislative investigator by mid-week — but only in writing, and with the answers funneled through his lawyer, the McCain-Palin campaign said Monday.

Gov. Sarah Palin is under an abuse of power investigation by the Legislature about the firing of her former public safety commissioner. Palin initially said she'd cooperate with the investigation, but her campaign has called the probe biased and instead prefers a separate, more secretive investigation through the state Personnel Board.

Both Palin and her husband are expected to talk to the Personnel Board investigator sometime next week, the McCain-Palin campaign said.

The campaign has fought the Legislative Council's investigation, claiming it's become politicized by Democrats. Todd Palin and various Palin aides refused to testify under subpoena before the Senate Judiciary Committee in September.

The attorney general sued to get the subpoenas of the Palin aides dismissed, but lost the case in Superior Court Thursday.

The McCain-Palin campaign claims Todd Palin's written responses to Stephen Branchflower — the investigator hired by a bi-partisan group of 12 legislators — would satisfy the subpoena.

Ignoring a subpoena can mean jail time.

Is Todd Palin really off the hook?

"That's really a question for the full Senate to decide, though his cooperation is certainly something that anyone would look favorably upon," Sen. Hollis French, an Anchorage Democrat who is overseeing the investigation, wrote in an e-mail Monday.

News of Todd Palin's upcoming question-and-answer responses to Branchflower came at one of the McCain-Palin camp's regular press conferences at the campaign headquarters in Midtown. Campaign signs line the office windows facing Benson Boulevard — mostly McCain-Palin placards, but also a smattering of signs for other Alaska Republicans, including Sen. Ted Stevens.

Stevens is running for re-election while fighting federal corruption charges in Washington, D.C. Palin campaign spokeswoman Meghan Stapleton said the governor and vice-presidential nominee won't say whether she'll endorse him until after the trial.

"She reserves every right to say she's going to wait along with the rest of the world and see what happens in the court," Stapleton said.

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