The McCain-Palin campaign is now refusing
to answer questions about the one Trooper-Gate investigation they're cooperating with.
That's the investigation, of course, that's being conducted by the state personnel board, whose members are appointed by the governor.
Referring to the state's investigator, Timothy Petumenos, campaign spokeswoman Meg Stapleton told reporters Tuesday: "He has asked to keep things confidential, so we will respect those wishes."
The McCain-Palin camp's tight-lipped approach stands in contrast to its willingness to talk freely about the state legislature's independent investigation, which the campaign has refused to cooperate with.
In recent weeks, the campaign has sent a team of lawyers and PR pros to Alaska to badmouth the probe as politically motivated -- despite a bipartisan 12-0 vote to launch the investigation. McCain aides, including Stapleton, have publicly questioned
the impartiality of Hollis French and Kim Elton, the Democratic legislators overseeing the investigation, as well independent investigator Steve Branchflower. They have disparaged the record of Walt Monegan, the veteran and widely respected former public safety commissioner whose firing is at the heart of the case. And they have argued that the legislature lacks jurisdiction to pursue the matter -- an argument that appears to have little legal standing.
It's also worth noting that CNN has been taken in a bit by the McCain camp's spin. The headline and lead two paragraphs of the CNN story fail to make clear that the investigation in question is the state probe -- which likely won't be completed until after the election, and is being overseen by state employees ultimately answerable to the governor -- rather than the independent investigation being conducted by the legislature. A CNN story from Monday fell into a similar trap