Palin, Monegan comments on Troopergate changed over time

September 27, 2008 

Former Department of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan on his dismissal

He does not know why he lost his job.

He can't talk about whether Palin ever discussed Wooten, saying it was a personnel matter. "It's the law, and I took an oath."

-- Daily News article, July 18

He still isn't sure why he was fired but thinks that Wooten could be part of it. "I don't know that it's all of it. ... I worked at the pleasure of the governor."

Three top Palin aides pressured him to fire Wooten: Mike Tibbles, the governor's chief of staff; Annette Kreitzer, commissioner of administration; and Frank Bailey, the governor's director of boards and commissions. Sarah and Todd Palin also spoke to him about Wooten, the governor on Feb. 13 and Todd Palin both before and after Feb. 13.

-- Daily News article, July 19

"Am I accusing the governor of anything? ... No."

-- KUDO interview July 21

He never specifically told Palin he was feeling pressed -- he didn't think he had to say it.

-- Daily News article, Aug. 15

The more he thinks about it, the more he believes his firing is directly related to Wooten keeping his job. "It was a significant factor if not the factor."

-- Daily News article, Aug. 30

He believes he was fired because of his failure to fire trooper Wooten.

-- Daily News article, Sept. 16 Gov. Sarah Palin on the dismissal of Department of Public Safety Commissioner Walt Monegan

"Former Commissioner Monegan was not released due to any actions or inaction related to personnel issues in his department." She dismissed Monegan because she wants a new direction for the department.

"To allege that I, or any member of my family, requested, received or released confidential personnel information on an Alaska State Trooper, or directed disciplinary action be taken against any employee of the Department of Public Safety, is, quite simply, outrageous."

-- Governor press release, July 17

Monegan wasn't doing enough to recruit new troopers or fight alcohol and drug abuse in the Bush. "Action and results, not words, are the bottom line."

-- Daily News article, July 22

"I'm telling the truth when I say that there was never pressure put on Commissioner Monegan."

-- Daily News article, July 22

Members of her staff made about two dozen contacts with public safety officials about Wooten. Most of the calls came from her chief of staff at the time, Mike Tibbles.

-- Daily News article, Aug. 14

"I am truly disappointed and disturbed to learn that a member of this administration contacted the Department of Public Safety regarding Trooper Wooten. ... At no time did I authorize any member of my staff to do so."

-- Governor press release, Aug. 13

"Many of these inquiries were completely appropriate. However, the serial nature of the contacts could be perceived as some kind of pressure, presumably at my direction." Also, Monegan wasn't a team player on budgeting issues. He went to legislators and complained about her not proposing enough spending.

-- Daily News article, Aug. 14

McCain picks Palin for his running mate.

"... the reason Mr. Monegan was replaced by the Governor was an escalating pattern of insubordination and refusal to implement Administration policy on fiscal and budget matters..."

-- Legal brief filed for the governor with the state Personnel Board Gov. Sarah Palin on the investigation

"We would never prohibit, or be less than enthusiastic, about any kind of investigation. Let's deal in the facts, and you do that via investigation."

-- KTUU, July 18

"I'm happy to comply, to cooperate. I have absolutely nothing to hide. No problem with an independent investigation."

-- KTUU, July 24

About legislative investigator Steve Branchflower "I know he's a prosecutor, probably a heavy duty prosecutor, and so that kind of puzzles us why we are going down that road when we are very, very open to answering any questions anybody has of me or administrators."

-- KTUU, Aug. 1

"Governor Palin has directed all of her staff to cooperate fully with Branchflower."

-- Governor press release, Aug. 13

McCain picks Palin for his running mate.

Palin asks the state's three-person Personnel Board to review the circumstances surrounding the dismissal of Monegan -- making an ethics complaint against herself. While ethics complaints are usually confidential, Palin wants the matter open.

Her lawyer, Thomas Van Flein, asks the Legislature to drop its investigation. He indicates the governor likely will not agree to a deposition unless lawmakers turn the matter over to the Personnel Board.

-- Daily News article, Sept. 3

Senior Assistant Attorney General Michael Barnhill promises to go to court to block legislative subpoenas of state officials "unless the current manner of pursuing the investigation changes."

-- Daily News article, Sept. 12

"This governor has called for transparency and honesty, and the Democrats are on a smear campaign."

-- McCain-Palin spokeswoman Meg Stapleton at a press conference

Ed O'Callaghan, a spokesman for the McCain-Palin campaign, says the governor is "unlikely to cooperate" with the legislative investigation.

Separately, Van Flein, Palin's attorney, requests that the Personnel Board drop the ethics complaint that Palin lodged against herself.

-- Daily News article, Sept. 16

"...the Legislative Council investigation, besides being pursued for partisan purposes, is being conducted in violation of all accepted norms of due process. We further maintain our standing objection that the Legislative Council is acting unconstitutionally and in violation of the separation of powers."

-- Letter from Van Flein to Branchflower, Sept. 18

Palin indicates she will cooperate with the probe run by the Personnel Board.

-- Associated Press article, Sept. 22


Information compiled by Megan Holland. Find her online at adn.com/contact/mholland or call 257-4343.

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