Palin's spouse belonged to states'-rights group
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's husband, Todd, twice registered as a member of the Alaskan Independence Party, a states'-rights group that wants...
The Associated Press
ST. PAUL, Minn. — Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin's husband, Todd, twice registered as a member of the Alaskan Independence Party, a states'-rights group that wants to turn all federal lands in Alaska back to the state. Sarah Palin was never a member of the party, state officials said.
Todd Palin's party affiliation emerged Tuesday as the latest issue confronting the McCain campaign as it prepared to introduce Gov. Palin to the Republican National Convention today.
The McCain campaign Tuesday worked to tamp down questions about Sarah Palin's association with the Independence Party and with former presidential candidate Pat Buchanan that were being raised by Democrats, Internet bloggers and Independence Party officials.
Voter-registration records and past news reports show Gov. Palin never registered as a member of the Independence Party and backed Steve Forbes' presidential campaign in 2000, not Buchanan.
"Supporters of Barack Obama are engaged in an unfortunate and nasty smear campaign," McCain spokesman Brian Rogers said, specifically citing issues related to Palin's politics.
Gail Fenumiai, director of the Alaska Division of Elections, said Todd Palin twice registered under the Alaskan Independence Party: in 1995 and 2000. Some party leaders have advocated secession from the United States, though that is not a goal listed in the party's platform.
Voter-registration records show Sarah Palin registered in May 1982 as a member of the Republican Party and she has not changed her affiliation. Todd Palin has been registered undeclared since 2002, Fenumiai said.
Palin did address the Alaskan Independence Party's state convention by video this year, welcoming the party to Fairbanks.
"Your party plays an important role in our state's politics," she said in the video, posted on the party's Web site. "I've always said that competition is so good, and that applies to political parties as well."
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