Reading Todd Palin's statement

It really is quite a document. I'm still working my way through it in fits and starts. As I noted yesterday, it is unmistakeably a political document. As a legal defense, though, the idea seems to be to heap all of the wrongdoing on Todd Palin's head. The theory is clear enough -- he isn't a government employee, and so many of the relevant laws don't apply to him -- but I just can't understand why the Palins think that the picture they're painting, with Todd Palin coming off as a nutjob with all but unrestricted access to the levers of state power, is one that insulates Sarah Palin from criticism. At the very best it makes Sarah Palin seem entirely out of her depth. As Governor.

Here's Todd Palin's answer to the question, "What communications did you have with Frank Bailey regarding Mike Wooten?"
We had a lot of conversations about a guy who threatened my family and verbally assaulted my daughter. We talked about my concerns. We talked about Wooten possibly pulling over one of my kids to frame them, like throwing a bag of dope in the back seat just to frame a Palin. We talked about Wooten's statements or actions against Molly and Wooten being a ticking time bomb mentally [Wooten a ticking time bomb?? -- ed.] and my concern for the safety of my father in-law and the rest of my family. I told Frank about my concerns about Wooten supposedly being disabled but at the same time riding snowmachines or motorcycles. I told him how I could not understand how a person like that could do all these things and still carry a gun and a badge. We communicated about Wooten being on shift but waiting in front of schools for 45 minutes while on duty running his kids around in a patrol car. [Wooten doesn't know the boundary between public and private?? -- ed.] Frank and I discussed Wooten a lot in the last few years, in person and over the phone and by email. I never asked Frank Bailey to call Rodney Dial for me about Wooten, but I repeatedly expressed my frustration to Frank about Wooten and, in my opinion, a flawed system that protected Wooten.

Apologies for the internal notes. I've got to type this stuff in manually, and I just couldn't help myself.

A note about the defense. The one and only defensible reason that Todd Palin or anyone in the Palin administration had for targetting Trooper Wooten would be a sincere belief that Wooten was a continuing threat to the governor or her immediate family. Lots of Todd Palin's answers, including this one, begin with an expression of fear about just such a threat. Regardless of whether those expressions are made in good faith, it's just clear as day that the obsession with Wooten went far beyond that. Todd Palin is here admitting to using the apparatus of the state in a personal vendatta. And by the way, even assuming good faith, his fears don't seem entirely rational to me.

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