AZ Rep-Elect Hires Palin-Connected Dentist As COS

January 3, 2011 6:10 am

A congressman-elect from Arizona has hired a retired Wasilla dentist closely tied to former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin as his chief of staff.

Rep.-elect Paul Gosar (R-AZ), himself a dentist, hired Rob Robinson as his top aide, Roll Call reports today. Palin endorsed Gosar after Robinson, a political friend of hers, introduced them.

Both Gosar and Robinson are members of the American Dental Association and served together on the organization’s governmental affairs council. Robinson moved to Arizona last year to work as Gosar’s campaign manager.It’s the second member of the Palin circle to find work with Gosar. The new congressman also hired Thomas Van Flein, the Palin family’s lawyer, as his deputy chief of staff and legislative director.

Van Flein and Robinson also have a history: Van Flein has represented the Alaska Dental Society, of which Robinson is a former president.

“They are battle-tested with me and things we have to take on with regards to dentistry,” Gosar told Roll Call.

Palin hired Van Flein in 2008 to defend her in the Trooper-Gate investigation, a scandal revolving around the firing of a state trooper who was embroiled in a family dispute with the Palins. Palin has kept Van Flein on retainer this year, paying him $10,000 a month through her PAC.

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