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Palin Questioned Legislators' Per Diems

By Matthew Mosk
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin charged taxpayers a per diem for her meals and incidental expenses as governor but was a vocal critic of a similar perk for state legislators.

The Washington Post reported yesterday that, during the first half of 2007, Palin billed the state a "per diem" allowance while she was working from her Wasilla, Alaska, home and away from the state capital in Juneau. She later amended her expense reports so they no longer included the phrase "Lodging -- Own Residence," but still kept the alloted money.

Yet when it came to a historic special session of the state legislature in Anchorage this summer, Palin sharply questioned granting per diems to law makers who traveled to it from distant parts of the state.

The Anchorage Daily News reported that, in July, Palin spoke out against costs associated with the seven-hour special session 600 miles from Juneau held June 26. Each legislator was granted a per diem of between $208 and $278 to be used on meals and hotels during the session. Anchorage sits just south of Wasilla.

That price tag, the paper reported, struck Palin as too high.

"That makes absolutely no sense, that a seven-hour meeting costs our Legislature over $100,000," Palin said. "What the heck were they charging the state for then?"

By Web Politics Editor  |  September 10, 2008; 1:49 PM ET
Categories:  Sarah Palin , The Green Zone  
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Next: Palin Weighed Down by Baggage


So, she pockets per diems, charging for "lodging - own residence" and then complains when others ask for reimbursement for actual hotel expenses. I think she will do great as successor to Cheney.

Posted by: frank burns | September 11, 2008 7:03 AM | Report abuse

Really is this the best the Republican Party has to offer. Come on really - shouldn't all of this been checked out before she was offered VP.

This woman is a complete mess. How can anyone justify her of behavior.

Posted by: Terri | September 11, 2008 1:43 AM | Report abuse

Anyone can say anything they want until they get sued for slander. Until she speaks for herself, this is just business as usual. She is lucky she's conservative, or Mad Mac might lose his temper and call her a

Posted by: PreAmerikkkan | September 11, 2008 1:06 AM | Report abuse

Please cover the story that she didn't really fire her chef, but gave her a new job title while she kept cooking!!!

Posted by: Di | September 10, 2008 10:42 PM | Report abuse

She didnt even kill the bridge, it was allready dead and COMPLETELY out of her control.
As for this article, its only the tip of the iceberg for Failin Pailin, with all the investigations going on, its no wonder she flopped from her campaign ideals.Basically everything she ran on, including the "Bridge" is under investigation.Hell, Sounds like ALASKA itself is under investigation.
Cant wait to hear more on the PIPELINE idea shes been LOBBYING washington about since she got into office.
Seems the Mrs. thinks she has an in with BIG OIL, and is going to take FEDERAL MONEY (that yours and mine)and build a pipeline to the lower 48. so the allready engourged oil tycoons can make even more money off of the over inflated market.
Maybe its a smart idea: get money from FEDs to Build it, State owns and operates it (getting paid by the Big oil No doubt) while the rest of AMERICA gets bled to death.

Posted by: Mullett | September 10, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

Is John McCain the Anti-Christ???????

I will not be voting in this election.

Posted by: Christian | September 10, 2008 8:51 PM | Report abuse

She deserves the per diem for selling that Bridge to Nowhere on eBay!

Posted by: snoopy | September 10, 2008 8:43 PM | Report abuse

She takes it herself but complains when others take it. Yup, she's a Republican.

Posted by: Mary | September 10, 2008 6:45 PM | Report abuse

"Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin has billed taxpayers for 312 nights spent in her own home during her first 19 months in office, charging a "per diem" allowance intended to cover meals and incidental expenses while traveling on state business."
"....She wrote some form of "Lodging -- own residence" or "Lodging -- Wasilla residence" more than 30 times at the same time she took a per diem, according to the reports. In two dozen undated amendments to the reports, the governor deleted the reference to staying in her home but still charged the per diem."

Lets see, She gets a free house in Juneau, and takes money from tax payers by chargeing per diem to stay in her own home in Wasilla. But leaves a town of about 5,400 $20 million dollars in debt when she was mayor, hmmm. What a hustle. No wonder half of Alaska is under investigation for corruption. What a hustle.

Posted by: FOOLS GOLD23 | September 10, 2008 6:04 PM | Report abuse

Seems to me that Barak Obama is writing everyone else's op plans for them, like the bush admin, and they are the ones who are taking credit for his ideas on how to get us out of our current Viet Nam.

And in closing, a quick note: If you are voting for McSame, please be sure that all eligible members of your family are properly registered with the Selective Service System. Semper Fidelis
McCain stands for POW

Protecting Oil's Wealth
Pummeling Our Wishes
Preacher Of Wars
Personally Offending Women
Poll Ogling Waffler
Pompous Outdated Wannabe

failin' palin calls herself a reformer==google her name and read for yourself.she calls herself a pitbull--do not insult a pitbull.
she is as corrupt as any other republican't.
if it walks like a duck and talks like a duck it is a duck!!
sexism card and pow card because they have ZIP!! Issues and how to put them into play--ZIP!!

Posted by: Katerina Deligiannis | September 10, 2008 5:47 PM | Report abuse

Palin and McCain just have to hope the independent voters who will decide the election don't wake up before November and realize what a pack of lies the they are spreading around.

Posted by: bgjd1979 | September 10, 2008 5:25 PM | Report abuse


I will be happy to wait until we see her tax return before making unfounded accusations ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 10, 2008 5:18 PM | Report abuse

"Mrs. Palin also killed the infamous Bridge to Nowhere in her own state. Yes, she once supported the project: But after witnessing the problems created by earmarks for her state and for the nation's budget, she did what others like me have done: She changed her position and saved taxpayers millions."

She didn't save taxpayers millions - she may have killed the bridge, but she KEPT the $$. Where's the savings, exactly?

Posted by: AK Sag | September 10, 2008 4:53 PM | Report abuse

By my reckoning, Palin is a THIEF & TAX CHEAT.

To pocket taxpayer money as compensation/reimbursement for staying at HOME is completely outrageous. Ask any State or Federal employee if they can claim per diem when they go home each night. Just ask them... Better yet, try the Palin per diem reimbursement plan with your employer and see how long you last!..

To pocket taxpayer money in reimbursement for staying HOME makes her THIEF!!! Gov. Conversion of money from the state of Alaska to her PERSONAL use is stealing from the people of Alaska.

Additionally, without a valid offsetting business expense deduction the per diem Gov. Palin received would be considered fully taxable income and she should have reported that income on her federal income tax return. While we (the American People) have not yet been made privy to the Palin tax returns, I'd be willing to wager a day's pay that she did not claim the per diem she received as income on her tax return.

Thus, I willing to go out on limb and assert that Sarah Palin is also a tax cheat. Which to means she stole from the American Taxpayer (YOU & ME)

If you don't understand why her actions were wrong, you simply don't want to understand!


Posted by: bdthrill | September 10, 2008 4:52 PM | Report abuse


For someone who claims to "like" Palin, you sure do post lots of unfounded rumors -- on every thread, no less -- good thing you don't "like" Obama ; )

Posted by: JakeD | September 10, 2008 4:32 PM | Report abuse

Wow, I guess Palin does get it., Despite all the scandals and the alledged affair,

She is more in touch with the American People. I guess people feel like she is one of us. The same way I felt about Huckabee. First commenter is right. Obama should of Picked Hillary. If he loses, It was his pride that cost him this election.

Theyre are rumors swirling that Sarah Palin may be Pregnant again? How will that affect her VP spot??

I like Palin, I just wish it was a Huckabee/Palin ticket.

Posted by: pastor123 | September 10, 2008 4:14 PM | Report abuse


Please quote even ONE "lie".

Posted by: JakeD | September 10, 2008 3:37 PM | Report abuse

Padding the expenses is something that most working Americans are familiar with. WE are also very familiar with the crook who takes it too far, gets caught, is fired immediately and is sometimes prosecuted. That is what Sarah Palin is: a small-time con artist.

No wonder she is so shameless in repeating debunked lies over and over and over and over again. If you've ever met a grifter, you know Gov. Palin.

Posted by: Stav | September 10, 2008 3:12 PM | Report abuse

The original WaPo story appears to be yet another smear attempt from that paper:

Posted by: 24AheadDotCom | September 10, 2008 3:04 PM | Report abuse

"That makes absolutely no sense, that a seven-hour meeting costs our Legislature over $100,000," Palin said. "What the heck were they charging the state for then?"

Is it possible someone with such a fundamental lack of understanding of the logistics of government could be the star of the GOP presidential ticket?

I guess I shouldn't be surprised.

Posted by: zukermand | September 10, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Is it true that the winner in November's election will be the candidate that bumps off mutual opponent first?

Apparently the mutual opponent exposed corruption within both parties and now the persons are targeted by candidates representing their respective parties. This raises the following questions.....

1. Will GOP use Guiliani-like mob ties like his protege Bernard Kerik who was indicted and may get 140 years in jail for such ties?

2. Will Dems use OJ Simpson-like felon that may do jail time soon?

3. Will both GOP and Dems offer sweetheart exchange deals to both Guiliani-like mob-ties and OJ-like felon where once they commit murder, their jail time is lessened in exchanged?

4. Having blown the whistle on this possibility, should we worry about the safety of our family too whether in public or private as we are watched 24/7 and our habits and plans are known in advanced? For example, should my husband worry about doing his daily 20-30 minutes jog after work in Hackensack and or Bogota, NJ? Or my taking the bus to Maywood, NJ for a doctor's appointment around the same time?

Posted by: Anonymous | September 10, 2008 2:41 PM | Report abuse

Hey Barry Obama- This isn't "Change your name Change"...this isn't "bonehead move" change, this isn't " Joe changed his name for the author's name on his law school papers" change, this isn't "I attended the church for 20 years but didn't hear anything controversial" change,


From Today's Wall Street Journal!

Yes, Palin Did Stop That Bridge
September 10, 2008

"But, you know, when you've been taking all these earmarks when it's convenient, and then suddenly you're the champion anti-earmark person, that's not change. Come on! I mean, words mean something, you can't just make stuff up." -- Barack Obama, Sept. 6, 2008

In politics, words are cheap. What really counts are actions. Democrats and Republicans have talked about fiscal responsibility for years. In reality, both parties have a shameful record of wasting hundreds of billions of tax dollars on pork-barrel projects.

My Senate colleague Barack Obama is now attacking Gov. Sarah Palin over earmarks. Having worked with both John McCain and Mr. Obama on earmarks, and as a recovering earmarker myself, I can tell you that Mrs. Palin's leadership and record of reform stands well above that of Mr. Obama.

Let's compare.

Mrs. Palin used her veto pen to slash more local projects than any other governor in the state's history. She cut nearly 10% of Alaska's budget this year, saving state residents $268 million. This included vetoing a $30,000 van for Campfire USA and $200,000 for a tennis court irrigation system. She succinctly justified these cuts by saying they were "not a state responsibility."

Meanwhile in Washington, Mr. Obama voted for numerous wasteful earmarks last year, including: $12 million for bicycle paths, $450,000 for the International Peace Museum, $500,000 for a baseball stadium and $392,000 for a visitor's center in Louisiana.

Mrs. Palin cut Alaska's federal earmark requests in half last year, one of the strongest moves against earmarks by any governor. It took real leadership to buck Alaska's decades-long earmark addiction.

Mr. Obama delivered over $100 million in earmarks to Illinois last year and has requested nearly a billion dollars in pet projects since 2005. His running mate, Joe Biden, is still indulging in earmarks, securing over $90 million worth this year.

Mrs. Palin also killed the infamous Bridge to Nowhere in her own state. Yes, she once supported the project: But after witnessing the problems created by earmarks for her state and for the nation's budget, she did what others like me have done: She changed her position and saved taxpayers millions. Even the Alaska Democratic Party credits her with killing the bridge.

When the Senate had its chance to stop the Bridge to Nowhere and transfer the money to Katrina rebuilding, Messrs. Obama and Biden voted for the $223 million earmark, siding with the old boys' club in the Senate. And to date, they still have not publicly renounced their support for the infamous earmark.

Mrs. Palin has proven courageous by taking on big spenders in her own party. In March of this year, the Anchorage Daily News reported that, "Alaska Sen. Ted Stevens is aggravated about what he sees as Gov. Sarah Palin's antagonism toward the earmarks he uses to steer federal money to the state."

Mr. Obama had a chance to take on his party when Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid offered a sham ethics bill, which was widely criticized by watchdog groups such as Citizens Against Government Waste for shielding earmarks from pubic scrutiny. But instead of standing with taxpayers, Mr. Obama voted for the bill. Today, he claims he helped write the bill that failed to clean up Washington.

Mr. Obama has shown little restraint on earmarks until this year, when he decided to co-sponsor an earmark moratorium authored by Mr. McCain and myself. Mr. Obama is vulnerable on this issue, and he knows it. That is why he is lashing out at Mrs. Palin and trying to hide his own record.

Mrs. Palin is one of the strongest antiearmark governors in America. If more governors around the country would do what she has done, we would be much closer to fixing our nation's fiscal problems than we are.

Mrs. Palin's record here is solid and inspiring. She will help Mr. McCain shut down the congressional favor factory, and she has a record to prove it. Actions mean something. You can't just make stuff up.

Mr. DeMint, a Republican, is a U.S. senator from South Carolina.

Posted by: Scott | September 10, 2008 2:35 PM | Report abuse

Oh Jesus not another crook in the republic
party! man i can see this dildo,now
just ripping off our national treasury!
why do we american mistreat our country so
badly,why do we want division as are-
definding hallmark,instead of unity?Mcsame
is the worst pick that could have came
out of the GOP primaries,Mcsame is living
to to his screw up persona at every angle,
he is just one of them people that everything he does,he screw up,you can't
change the spots on a leopard,but please don't take us (america) down with your
silly ,lying arse. it's not our fault
that you just one unluckly SOB,and your
girl pick is a damm fool too.I am already
sick of her playing the victim card!
oh I am A pit bull with lipstick,if you
say something about me ,you are a sexist

Mccain after you lose this election
please go somewere and just retire your
phoney arse down.Ok


Posted by: SHIRLEY | September 10, 2008 2:33 PM | Report abuse

what riverdaughter said,

“And now, the DNC and the Obama campaign are surprised that women are abandoning them and that Obama can’t raise enough money for the general. I’m surprised that they are surprised. What we have witnessed is an abuse of our caucus system, fradulent primaries and superdelegates substituting their will for the will of the voters. And all of this was done with Obama’s approval because it was more important that he win than whether the party survived his candidacy. He was even willing to let Congressional candidates lose if he couldn’t be at the top of the ticket.

Posted by: Anonymous | September 10, 2008 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Matthew Mosk:

Once you learn the difference between "Governor" and "legislators" when it comes to per diem expenses, then try to write this same article. The GOVERNOR is exempt from restrictions on per diem expenses. She did nothing wrong in billing the state a "per diem" allowance while she was working from her Wasilla, Alaska, home. Next canard?

Posted by: JakeD | September 10, 2008 2:21 PM | Report abuse

Palin/McCain: How Dare You Insult Pigs?

The faux outrage because Obama called the Palin/McCain ticket a “pig” is backfiring. The GOP, which is stumbling around attempting to play at identity politics, will miss with this one. Obama wasn’t referring the Palin specifically, as will be clear to anyone who watches it.

Americans reject the politics of identity, but more importantly, this ham-handed attempted to stir up the gender pot calls into question Palin’s readiness to lead.

For one thing, if you can’t take stand the heat, get into the kitchen. If she’s going to go toe-to-toe with Putin and Ahmadinejad, she can’t cry foul because someone said something “offensive.” Or gave her a “stern look.“

For another thing, if Palin wants to be treated as a man, then she should campaign as a man would. When you bring your children out with you and use them as campaign props you should expect questions about them and how you are parenting. A man would never walk around with the four month-old in his arms to create a tough dad photo op. That’s why he doesn’t get those questions.

Basically, the GOP wants to have their cake and eat it too. I urge them to keep trying.

Posted by: ES | September 10, 2008 2:06 PM | Report abuse

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