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The Alaskan Independence Party and Palin's Connection

By       Message carol jensen     Permalink
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Most Americans, at least those of us living in the "lower 48," had never heard of the Alaskan Independence Party until the governor of that state became the Republican Party's vice presidential pick just a few weeks ago.

The mainstream media has been forced to "vet" Ms. Palin because, unfortunately for the Republican Party, John McCain's VP search committee failed to do so. Things that should have been "red flags," as far as her suitability for office goes, might include ethics scandals, which were already under investigation at the time, suspicious earmarks and pet projects outstripping any other state's, as well as out-of-the-mainstream views on almost every issue, not to mention a severe lack of knowledge on any national or international topic that might come up.

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But all of these potential problems for the ticket seem like small potatoes when it was revealed by ABC and NBC News organizations that Palin had an "association" with the Alaskan Independence Party (AIP), which could make it extremely difficult for John McCain to continue using his favorite slogan, "Country First" with Governor Palin on the ticket, since the goal of the AIP is to vote on secession from the United States of America.

CBS News quoted AIP chairman Lynette Clark who proudly stated that "The Alaskan Independence Party challenges the legality of Alaska's statehood vote as being illegal and in violation of United Nation's charter and international law."

The party lists its complaint on its website (akip) that all of its citizens weren't allowed to vote in 1958, and now demand to do so by picking one of the following alternatives: "1. Remain a territory; 2. Become a separate and independent Nation; 3. Accept Commonwealth status; 4. Become a State."

They also seek "the complete repatriation of the public lands held by the federal government" to the people of Alaska, using oil and gas profits to become self-sufficient. So Palin's desire to drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge makes more sense now.

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Any group advocating secession from the United States of America is not only un-American but treasonous, particularly among patriotic citizens in the year 2008. The founder of the AIP, Joe Vogler, who died in a plastic-explosives accident (but that's a whole other story) is clearly a radical simply by his own words.

ABC and CBS reported that Vogler said, "I'm an Alaskan, not an American. I've no use for America or her damned institutions." He also said that "the fires of Hell are glaciers compared to my hate for the American government."

CBS also reported that "Marc Ambinder has a video of an AIP leader explaining that party members "Must 'infiltrate'-his words-the other two parties and push for the cause of Alaskan independence." How is Governor Palin associated with this philosophy? What is the connection?

In March of this year, Palin recorded a video welcoming the convention of the secessionist AIP, saying "We have a great promise to be a self-sufficient state, made up of the hardest working, most grateful Americans in our Nation." This video can be viewed on the AIP website.

In October 2007, AIP's vice chairman Dexter Clark was recorded on another video saying that, "Palin had been a registered member of AIP before switching to the GOP to be viable." He continued by saying that "The Federal government is just plain a monster. We don't say we are Americans. We say we are Alaskans." Clark delivered these remarks at the October 2007 "Second North American Secession Convention," according to the Jed Report.

ABC News reported that officials of the AIP told them Sarah Palin was a member. Lynette Clark, the chairman, told them that she and her husband Todd were members and in 1994 attended the state convention in their hometown of Wasilla. They both also attended the 1996 convention. Todd Palin was a registered member for 7 years.

Then, mysteriously, the AIP posted the following questionable denial: "Contrary to initial reports, Vice-Presidential candidate Governor Sarah Palin was never a member of our party. We stand corrected." They stand corrected by whom? The chairman of the party would certainly know who its members were. What or who could have caused this abrupt about face? I bet the McCain Campaign wishes it had done a better job of vetting this particular virtually unknown candidate.

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Will Sarah Palin's alleged association in the Alaskan Independence Party be too tough a hurdle to overcome with the base of the Republican Party? She may have been able to energize the conservatives, but it looks like she may be just a bit too extreme, even them.


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I am a retired college English instructor, and retired weekly Op-Ed columnist for my local paper. I now spend most of my time as a political activist, writing for progressive publications and working for candidates and causes that I believe in.

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The Alaskan Independence Party and Palin's Connection