The Next Palin Scandal

February 5th, 2010 at 2:11 pm David Frum | 32 Comments |

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Todd Palin was voicing approval or disapproval of Alaskan state hiring and appointments? Directly to the relevant authorities?

According to the NBC News report:

Nearly 3,000 pages of e-mails that Todd Palin exchanged with state officials, which were released to msnbc.com and NBC News by the state of Alaska under its public records law, draw a picture of a Palin administration where the governor’s husband got involved in a judicial appointment, monitored contract negotiations with public employee unions, received background checks on a corporate CEO, added his approval or disapproval to state board appointments and passed financial information marked ‘confidential’ from his oil company employer to a state attorney.

Conservatives were rightly irritated when Hillary Clinton tried to boot-strap her ceremonial position into a role in personnel and policy. But did even she go so far as this?

(h/t Andrew Sullivan, who has tirelessly bird-dogged this story.)

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32 Comments so far ↓

  • GOProud

    No comment further needed than “hat tip to Andie Sullivan”. Stamp this one: more Frum fetish on Palin bashing.

    The friends you keep, David, is appalling. Care to give up your speed dial number for Scottie McClellan now?

  • CentristNYer

    I don’t object to any elected official making use of a spouse’s advice and counsel, but it looks like the First Dude’s role went way beyond what was appropriate.

    Of course, let’s not overlook my favorite revelation from this report:

    “The governor coached her staff on how to disguise the amount of electrical work needed at the mansion to hook up her new tanning bed.”

  • andydp

    Back to the “will not to believe”.

    Their own words their own actions. To an historian (like myself) first person sources are the best. Why would this be a problem for anyone to believe ? I understand these e mails were heavily redacted. Then, I suppose if they came from the National Review they would be “truthier”.

    Yes, leaders use their spouse as a confidants, sounding boards and all. But it sounds like the “first Dude” was into it for a lot more than just pillow talk: 3000 pages of e mails ? Of course, with all that to work with I’m certain there’s more to find.

    We all know that this is a liberal David Frum plot to discredit Gov Palin. BTW: Any comment on not reporting two cabins on property co-owned by Gov Palin and a friend ?

  • msmilack

    Good job, Mr. Frum. To his critics above, who assume a h/t to Andrew Sullivan is an automatic disqualifier, why don’t you try examining the facts as Mr. Frum does instead of distorting reality with a preconceived notion of how you think the world either is or should be? Not everything falls neatly into two piles, right and left: facts are facts. Deal with them.

  • LFC

    So Sarah Palin turned state power over to a known secessionist. How un-American can you get?

  • TAZ

    Wow, more news that Palin is an oddball, who would have ever guessed…..

    Her fans are going to think this power sharing is the greatest idea in government, two for one (forget what was said about Bill and Hillary), genius.

    While this could be spun as just a spouse doing what other spouses do with her fans (although its not), it will not attract independents to her side.

    This is just another peek into the train wreck that is Sarah Palin……..

    Bottom line….

    Sarah simply does not have what it takes to run on the national stage.

    She does not have to fear Democrats, its her fellow Republicans that will savage her in any rave she may run in (payback for her burning Repubs to get her Gov seat).

  • sdspringy

    How amazing the focus of the MSM. Concerned over husband of a nonexistent governor, how a child may have traveled to an event in Alaska. Be still my beating heart. Great focus Dave.

    No emphasis on our current PRESIDENT and all the records that are kept out of the public sphere, from school transcripts, to minutes to meetings he chaired. No attempt to review the incredibly fraudulent “save or created” jobs numbers. Or any thoughts on the hourly rate paid to “save and create” a job by this administration.

    Pathetic.

  • kevin47

    This blog should be renamed “Hat Tip to Andrew Sullivan”.

  • msmilack

    Andrew Sullivan is a wonderful writer who for reasons of conscience could no longer identify with the Republican Party. I tip my hat to him.

  • TAZ

    Speaking for the Republican party…..

    The only problem the Republican party has with Mr. Sulivan is that he is a homosexual. He will be welcomed back in the party, and have his secret decoder ring given back, once he denounces his personal lifestyle choice.

    And as everyone knows, those fagots cant possibly identify and write on an honest political topic.

    Once again the queer agenda is revealed. Those people want us normal Americans to thinks they are normal too…..

    If he would only find Jesus……….

  • teabag

    “Apparently the teabagger convention web site says there are still tickets available for Sarah Palin’s speech tomorrow night. The Queen Tea Bagger was not able to sell out the hall. If anyone thinks that 600 Baggers is an impressive showing, please note that two weeks from now the National Wild Turkey Federation is gathering at the same venue. They are expecting 40,000 attendees. ”

    Maybe she should have talked to the Turkey guys seeing as she knows more about slaughtering Turkeys than the founding fathers. Remember the turkey slaughter speech at thanksgiving?

  • anniemargret

    Palin-bashing. Of course. Why not? she is in the news…to the point of exhaustion. It’s Sarah news all the time, 24/7. Sarah said this. Sarah said that. Sarah criticizes…….(fill in the blank).

    She is the de facto speaker for the Republican party, bar none. Does anyone care what Mitt Romney has to say? Anyone else on the Republican side other than she or Rush? Until the Republicans decide they’ve had enough, Dear Sarah will dominate the airwaves, magazine covers, newspaper columns, Facebook and the Net.

    And the Palin-bashing will continue. As it should.

  • GOProud

    Nice try there TAZ, but you aren’t exactly anyone’s vision of a GOP spokesman. The problem with Andie Sullivan is the same problem GOPers have with guys like David Frum and Scott McClellan… it’s something your side of the Democrat aisle is having significant problems with of late –LOYALTY.

    Andie Sullivan was never considered a GOPer by anyone except Andie Sullican selling and hawking his wares. Andie Sullivan was never considered a conservative by anyone except the darlings of the MSM in the farLeft who, like Scott McClellan, found a way to purchase Andie Sullivan’s loyalty and presence for a small sum.

    Gay conservatives don’t care too much for Sullivan because Sullivan’s morals are closer to a gay alley cat than merit someone so vocal in the public eye claiming to represent nearly every group, depending on who’s paying the freight for Andie’s rump.

    But you go with that “speaking for the GOP” thing. You’re as believable as Andie Sullivan on his worst day or TeaBagged on his best.

    As for our resident AnnieGotHerGun, it isn’t really an issue of what former governor Palin says… it’s that David Frum is such a pandering pundit to the farLeft his Palin-bashing has become a fetish. That, Annie, is the point you so glibly miss… sigh.

  • GOProud

    Kevin47 offers: “This blog should be renamed “Hat Tip to Andrew Sullivan”.”

    Well, when some here can’t come up with an originally insightful post and have to cater to the farLeft readership of Frum Forum, what can you expect. To the thread’s trolls, Andie Sullivan is a key angel in the Obama Messiah play.

    The friends David keeps proves more than the people he takes exception toward.

  • teabag

    Gay on Gay action. Not sure whether to laugh or hell yes I’ll laugh.

    MI-GopherProud, you never did say why you changed your handle. Did you feel that you were too extreme as Mi-GOPer. Because it did not work, you are still way right and more loony than the usual righty.

  • anniemargret

    GOProud: I would suspect that David Frum is concerned about Sarah Palin and her (negative) influence on the Republican party, ergo his repeated columns about her.

    Nothing weird about that.

  • msmilack

    GoProud

    Since you appear to dislike everyone and everything on this site, why do you read it and contribute? I’m genuinely curious.

  • grackle

    But did even she[Hillary Clinton] go so far as this?

    Well, she supervised the crafting of a universal healthcare bill for the United States. There is also her part in the passing of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act. I think these known examples constitute going pretty far.

    Hillary Clinton tried to boot-strap her ceremonial position into a role in personnel and policy.

    I would contend that she[Hillary] didn’t just TRY to play a “role in personnel and policy,” she definitely DID play a significant role in those and other areas, the extent of which will probably never be fully known. She had many detractors and still does, some of which even come from the Left, but never anything like the legions that are doggedly going after the Palins.

    True, “Conservatives were … irritated”(I never thought they were “rightly” irritated) at Hillary but there wasn’t much else they could do except be irritated because any President, or Governor for that matter, are pretty much free to take advice and assistance from whom they wish.

    As for the NBC News report: Apparently Todd Palin was used as an unpaid advisor to Sarah Palin. Apparently NBC and David Frum finds this mundane revelation to be a scandal.

    What would be surprising to me would be if Todd Palin had played no part in his wife’s activities as Governor, since they’ve always impressed me as having a close and compatible relationship that extends to all their activities(work, family, hobbies, etc.) – another characteristic that seems to really annoy some sophisticates.

  • ltoro1

    The one lesson I hope everyone gets out of this is if you are working in government and you have the slightest inclination that an email you are about to send may embarrass you if it shows up in the local newspaper, DO NOT SEND IT. If you feel the need to share any un-edited thoughts with someone, pick up the phone and give them a call.

  • grackle

    Obama-bashing. Of course. Why not? He is in the news…to the point of exhaustion. It’s Obama news all the time, 24/7. Obama said this. Obama said that. Obama criticizes…….(fill in the blank).

    He is the de facto speaker for the Democrat party, bar none. Does anyone care what Joe Biden has to say? Anyone else on the Democrat side other than he or Markos Moulitsas? Until the Democrats decide they’ve had enough, Dear Obama will dominate the airwaves, magazine covers, newspaper columns, Facebook and the Net.

    And the Obama-bashing will continue. As it should.

  • NH

    Next? What were the others? Much ado about nothing. If you want to really have cred about scandals, stick with Baby Doc Obamalier, because the worst is yet to come!

    The media ignored Biden, complete joke. And Obama is a lie a minute.

  • NH

    OH I have no problem whatso ever with Todd being involved — this is just another NON-scandal that discredit Sullivan not Palin.

  • advocatusdiaboli

    “Well, she supervised the crafting of a universal healthcare bill for the United States. There is also her part in the passing of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act. I think these known examples constitute going pretty far.”

    Not the same thing–not even close. Clinton is trying to press her socialist agenda legitimately–as wrong as many of us believe it to be. Palin, on the other hand, is ethically challenged and this is the latest in a series of incidents that cause those of us who place character and service to our country above party lines to doubt her fitness for leadership, her ethics, and her character. Troopergate was the tip of the ice berg. There are far more ethical, intelligent, and public stewardship inclined Republicans to lead this party. I commend David for his honesty and willingness to ignore party lines for the greater good of this nation. And I don’t consider a person’s sexual persuasion when I consider his words, deeds, character, and loyalty to this nation–the Joint Chiefs of Staff doesn’t either. The rest of you need to remember about THomas Jefferson and the separation of church and state–because your religion that is the only reason you condemn homosexuals. Is the Israeli Army godless? I am sure not.

  • NH

    You cannot be serious? If trooper is threatening someone’s life, the governor has the right to fire his ass anytime she wants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! There is no scandal there except the idiots who continue to try to make it one.

    Palin’s ethics are impeccable.

    Troopergate — what a joke! Keep talking as you are all making yourselves look like idiots.

  • NH

    @grackle: They just can’t stand Palin and her normal life… her success… and her refusal to capitulate to the dark underbelly of the creeps in both parties.

  • NH

    Secession is not unAmerican — it’s provided for in the Constitution… Keep the feds’ nose out of the states’ business they don’t belong. And lately they are trying to do things that should not concern them.

    Sorry — you won’t get anywhere bashing Todd for that.

  • NH

    The book on the right ‘Conservatism Can Win Again’ — written by THIS AUTHOR who is bashing Sarah???

    WHAT A JOKE!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Shawn Summers

    NH, the very fact that you think that “you won’t get anywhere” bringing up Todd Palin’s ties with the Alaska Independence Party shows just what an ideological bubble you live in. Secession is provided for in the Constitution? It’s funny, I just read the Constitution, and it didn’t say anything about the right of a state to leave the Union. Even if you twist the Tenth Amendment (and it is quite a twist) to say that states have the unenumerated power to secede, the Civil War and its aftermath has forever discredited the possibility of secession outside the militia movement and some dark corners of the internet. The Union is indivisible and perpetual.

    Out of curiosity, when was the last time you read the Constitution?

  • ch

    NH@24 – Troopergate was about Palin firing, not Trooper Wooten (of whom Palin was so “afraid” she fired her security detail – WTH?), but Walt Monegan, the AK Public Safety Commissioner. I think you have your “facts” a bit fuzzy.

    Any independent thinker, having been witness to Palin’s many lapses of ethics, would laugh to hear anyone say Palin’s ethics are “impeccable.” Come on. Take her off the pedastal. She’s a human. You’d be more believable if you were to say that you still like Palin in spite of her “pecadillos.” At least that would sound as if you lived in “reality.”

  • grackle

    I posted earlier: Well, she[Hillary Clinton] supervised the crafting of a universal healthcare bill for the United States. There is also her part in the passing of the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, the Adoption and Safe Families Act, and the Foster Care Independence Act. I think these known examples constitute going pretty far.

    The commentor: Not the same thing–not even close.

    I agree. Crafting actual federal legislation IS much more significant than merely assisting with the myriad minor daily tasks of a spouse who happens to hold an elected state office. Todd Palin assisted with some local Alaskan Governor’s office business while Hillary’s efforts were affecting an entire nation – not just a state – and from the office of the highest elective office in our land. Nope, not the same thing at all. Not that there’s anything wrong with either example, mind you. Like I wrote before – in our system of government a President or Governor is free to call upon just about anyone they want for advice and assistance. I wouldn’t have it any other way. But the commentor is correct in that the two examples are not the same – one is much more significant than the other.

    Clinton is trying to press her socialist agenda legitimately–as wrong as many of us believe it to be. Palin, on the other hand, is ethically challenged and this is the latest in a series of incidents that cause those of us who place character and service to our country above party lines to doubt her fitness for leadership, her ethics, and her character.

    It happens a lot, doesn’t it, readers? One agenda is seen and described as legitimate – and any other as “ethically challenged.” For some there is never a mere honest difference of opinion. It’s all seen from some sort of moral high ground where everything else is labeled as unethical, unfit, lacking in character, etc. These folks hold rigid opinions and have complete contempt for any deviation from their template. You either think and believe as they do or you are not legitimate.

    Troopergate was the tip of the ice berg.

    Here again, I agree. A subordinate, serving at the pleasure of his boss, was fired by his boss. This definitely constitutes the tip of an immense iceberg since the firing of subordinates by bosses happens so very often and is so very common all over the world. For any one example that can be cited there are no doubt millions more that make up the rest of the iceberg. I commend the commentor on this astute observation and brilliant metaphor.

    There are far more ethical, intelligent, and public stewardship inclined Republicans to lead this party.

    For the record, as of now Sarah Palin is not my first choice, either. But if it’s between her and Obama I will gladly vote for her. Sarah Palin has 3 years until the next Presidential. I’ll withhold final judgement until those days roll in. She could change, I could change, a lot of things could change, so the decision doesn’t have to be made yet. And of course we do not know whether she will ever run for another political office. .

    I commend David for his honesty and willingness to ignore party lines for the greater good of this nation.

    For all it’s worth, I also respect Frum’s right to hold an adverse opinion of Todd Palin’s role in Sarah Palin’s term as Alaskan Governor and of Sarah Palin herself – but of course I DO disagree with it.

    And I don’t consider a person’s sexual persuasion when I consider his words, deeds, character, and loyalty to this nation–the Joint Chiefs of Staff doesn’t either. The rest of you need to remember about Thomas Jefferson and the separation of church and state–because your religion that is the only reason you condemn homosexuals. Is the Israeli Army godless? I am sure not.

    I think here the commentor is speaking not to me but to other commentors – since I believe that gays openly serving in the military is probably an idea which is on the cusp of becoming the norm. There’s a commission being formed to study the issue and I withhold final judgement until the commission’s report is made public.

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