Like flies and maggots descending on a dead boar carcass, facts disproving the Palin maverick/reformer narrative are coming fast and furious.
Where to start?
Brent Bowdowsky over at TheHill.com yesterday wrote a blog titled “Pork Barrel Palin, The Earmark Champ” that details some of the humongous amounts of money that Palin has secured for her constituents, thanks in large measure to her indicted Senator mentor, Ted Stevens :
Now John McCain learns, as we do, that Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin (R) sent a 70-page memo to Sen. Ted Stevens (R-Alaska) in February seeking $200 million for new Alaska earmarks, and as mayor of the village of Wasilla she lobbied hard for and won more than $26 million of earmarks.[…]
Palin long ago hired the prime pork lobbying firm in Alaska, which features Ted Stevens’ son, and Ted Stevens’ former chief of staff, who serviced her pork lobbying account.
The regular junkets of Palin and her staff to Washington, hustling earmark dough, are legendary in Alaska. Someone will soon add up the airfare, hotel and fine dining tabs to push for the pork, plus the lobbying fees, all at taxpayer expense, starting with Wasilla, continuing as governor.
The dead tree version of today’s LA Times has more, leading with “McCain had criticized earmarks from Palin,” highlighting the fact that Palin was for the infamous “bridge to nowhere” before she was against it.
This year, Palin, who has been governor for nearly 22 months, defended earmarking as a vital part of the legislative system. “The federal budget, in its various manifestations, is incredibly important to us, and congressional earmarks are one aspect of this relationship,” she wrote in a newspaper column […]
McCain has made opposition to pork-barrel spending a central theme of his 2008 campaign. “Earmarking deprives federal agencies of scarce resources, at the whim of individual members of Congress,” McCain has said. […]
When Palin spoke after McCain introduced her as his running mate at a rally in Ohio last week, she made fun of earmarking. She said she had rejected $223 million in federal funds for a bridge linking Ketchikan to an island with an airport and 50 residents, referring to it by its derogatory label: the “bridge to nowhere.”
In the nationally televised speech, she stood by McCain and said, “I’ve championed reform to end the abuses of earmark spending by Congress. In fact, I told Congress thanks, but no thanks, on that bridge to nowhere. If our state wanted a bridge, I said, we’d build it ourselves.”
However, as a candidate for governor in 2006, Palin had backed funding for the bridge. After her election, she killed the much-ridiculed project when it became clear the state had other priorities. She said she would use the federal funds to fill those needs.
Over at the Politico, we learn that:
McCain campaign manager Rick Davis told Washington Post editors Tuesday that issues will have an impact on undecided voters but will not be conclusive.
“This election is not about issues,” Davis said. “This election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates.”
Thus the urgency of Palin’s prime time speech at the Rethuglican’s convention tonight, meant to define her as something she’s not, before her real character is exposed.