Shoveling Through Kristan Cole’s Press Release…
OK, looks like we’re ready to go on a field trip, and shovel our way through yesterday’s press release from Kristan Cole, trustee for The Alaska Fund Trust (aka Sarah Palin’s legal defense fund). Stick with me and don’t get separated, or we may never find you in there. It’s easy to get lost in the histrionics, the whining, and the unrelenting spin. Ready?
First off, we learn that the conclusions reached by Mr. Daniel are “unprecedented in the history of our country.” Yes, never in 223 years and two weeks has there been such an outrage!
On a side note, I envision the beleaguered Mr. Daniel at home with a nice big snifter of brandy, muttering and throwing those fancy expensive darts that come in a wooden box at a target featuring the official state portrait of the soon-to-be-ex-governor. We’ll call this the “Branchflower Syndrome.” This happens when a respected independent investigator gets thrown under the bus because he came up with a conclusion that Palin didn’t like.
Back to Cole’s press release, and a few discrepencies we find contained therein:
From Cole: Because [Daniel’s] initial review was unprecedented and contained factual errors it was my understanding that Governor Palin’s legal team, including Mr. Van Flein, were in ongoing discussions with Mr. Daniel. The matter was not final.
But Daniel said his report was final.
2. Who decided?
From Cole: This is particularly notable, and concerning, in light of the fact that the Trust, on my instructions, has not paid even one penny to Gov. Palin or her lawyers. I issued that instruction because I was aware the Board was reviewing this matter.
And this from Tom Daniel’s recommendation:
My recommendation is that the governor should refuse to accept payment of her legal fees and costs from The Alaska Fund Trust and withdraw her authorization for the trust to be recognized as her “official” legal defense fund.
From Cole: So far Mr. Daniel is the only lawyer in the country who has questioned a legal defense fund. (!)
From Cole: I want to be clear on a point that has been misrepresented: The Governor is not and was not involved with the Trust. The Governor has never worked on or with the Trust.
5. Asking for help
From Cole: In their own humble way, the Palins never asked for help. The Governor never asked anyone to help with this legal expense fund.
From Sarah Palin:
“Obviously we cannot afford to personally pay these bills — and really no future governor should feel the sense of financial vulnerability at the hands of those with a political vendetta bent on personal destruction,” Palin wrote. “Some have suggested a legal fund to pay these bills. We’ll have to pursue that.”
“I must defend against these baseless ethics accusations out of my own pocket as the use of public monies to do so could itself violate state law,” Palin wrote.
“As governor of the state of Alaska I have accrued bills for legal representation concerning false, wasteful and frivilous (sic) allegations,” she wrote in her March statement. “To defend my actions as Governor my family has amassed hundreds of thousands of dollars in fees.”
She also mentioned it in her speech at the Anchroage Lincoln Day dinner.
If you say “I’m thirsty!” enough, someone will usually offer you a drink without you having to say “I’d like a drink.”
(I look over at you and notice that you’re leaning on your shovel handle, and looking a little pale and sweaty)
I think it’s time for a break. Everyone have a seat for a minute. Pull out your aspirin or flask, or some hydrading liquid and we’ll pick up again in a little while…