The Peach

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Sunday, August 31, 2008

Palin Lobbying Firm Under Investigation

It appears that John McCain's newly selected running mate, Sarah Palin, is not the anti-corruption crusader she claims to be. There have been many reports on her flip-flop over the now failed "bridge to nowhere," refuting her claims that she said "thanks but no thanks" to the federally funded project.

Now The Peach has come across another piece of curious doings during Palin's tenure as mayor of that booming metropolis, Wasilla. While mayor, Palin hired a Washington lobbying firm to secure $8 million in congressionally directed spending projects, better known as earmarks. The lobbying firm was headed by Steven Silver, a former chief of staff to Sen. Ted Stevens of Alaska, the main force behing the "bridge."

Steven Silver is a member of the firm Robertson, Monagle & Eastaugh, a lobbying firm with offices in both Virginia and Alaska. The firm is connected to a long running corruption probe of oil money, legislators, and lobbyists in Juneau's Statehouse. In the summer of 2007 the F.B.I. raided the homes of Sen. Ted Stevens and Rep. Don Young as part of the investigation. So, while Palin trumpets her political reform horn, the reality is that she used the same lobbying firm that was under investigation in 2007.

The concern over the investigation became so great that the firm has recently changed its name to Hoffman, Silver, Gilman & Blasco. The Peach can only wonder if the name change also occured to avoid any embarassment or connection to Palin.

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