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Palin Could Help McCain Attract Hillary Supporters If She Can Address Troopergate

If you're looking for answers as to why Senator McCain may have chosen a running mate who's involved in a messy state investigation, think "women's votes" and then think "former Clinton supporters." But she may well try to explain away the allegations of abusing her power by characterizing the investigation as payback for tangling with the state's GOP hierarchy.

Gov. Sarah Palin's own legislature launched a $100,000 investigation earlier this month, as the Associated Press reported, "to determine if Palin dismissed Alaska's public safety commissioner because he would not fire (a state) trooper, Mike Wooten. Wooten went through a messy divorce from Palin's sister. Palin has denied the commissioner's dismissal had anything to do with her former brother-in-law. And she denied orchestrating the dozens of telephone calls made by her husband and members of her administration to Wooten's bosses.

Palin said she welcomes the investigation: 'Hold me accountable.'"

And that the legislature will do, for sure. Tangling with GOP powers in Alaska is not new to Governor Palin. She took on longtime GOP potentate Frank Murkowski and beat him in his attempt to win re-election as governor. That after Murkowski's 21 years in the U.S. Senate and, some would say, nepotistic selection of his daughter to replace him in Washington.

By Bonnie Erbe