A bipartisan committee of Alaska legislators voted 12-0 on Friday to release a report stating that Gov. Sarah Palin violated state ethics law "by trying to have her former brother-in-law fired as a state trooper."
Here are the key findings, written by Stephen Branchflower, the chief investigator of an Alaska legislative panel; the complete report is embedded below.
For the reasons explained in section IV of this report, I find that Governor Sarah Palin abused her power by violating Alaska Statute 39/52/110(a) of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act. Alaska Statute 39.52.110(a) provides
The legislature reaffirms that every public officer holds office as a public trust, and any effort to benefit a personal or financial interest through official action is a violation of that trust.
I find that, although Walt Monegan's refusal to fire Trooper Michael Wooter was not the sole reason he was fired by Governor Sarah Palin, it was likely a contributing factor to his termination as Commissioner of Public Safety. In spite of that, Governor Palin's firing of Commissioner Monegan was a proper and lawful exercise of her constitutional and statutory authority to hire and fire executive branch department heads.
Harbor Adjustment Service of Anchorage, and its owner Ms. Murleen Wilkes, handled Trooper Michael Wooten's workers' compensation claim properly and in the normal course of business like any other claim process by Harbor Adjustment Service and Ms. Wilkes. Further, Trooper Wooten received all the workers' compensation benefits to which he was entitled.
The Attorney General's office has failed to substantially comply with my August 6, 2008 written request to Governor Sarah Palin for information about the case in the form of emails.
The full report: