Sarah Palin: Formal Complaint Filed With Alaska Attorney General To Investigate Palin's Failure to Issue Juneteenth Proclamation Violating The Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act

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The Alaska Attorney General's Office received a formal complaint yesterday charging that Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin violated the law when she failed to issue a proclamation for the state's Juneteenth Day in 2007

My personal story regarding Palin was just a part of the press conference. The main focus was to give the affected people in Alaska a forum before the national media to voice what was in effect, a snubbing of our emancipation holiday

The Alaska Attorney General's Office received a formal complaint yesterday charging that Alaskan Governor Sarah Palin violated the law when she failed to issue a proclamation for the state's Juneteenth Day in 2007. The holiday observance, which celebrates the freeing of the last remaining slaves in Galveston, Texas on June 19, 1865, has been adopted in 29 states and was signed into law in Alaska in 2001. The bill known as HB 100 specifies that the "governor shall issue a proclamation observing the day."

The formal complaint (#EH274215525) stems from a press conference held at the National Press Club in Washington, DC on October 7, 2008 by jazz musician Gregory Charles Royal, a judge on the reality program America's Hot Musician (http://www.americashotmusician.org), who claimed Palin made a racially disparaging comment to him back in 1990 while touring Alaska with the Duke Ellington Orchestra. During that press conference, several representatives of the Juneteenth celebration in Alaska spoke to reporters about their concerns regarding Governor Palin's race relations in Alaska.

"My personal story regarding Palin was just a part of the press conference. The main focus was to give the affected people in Alaska a forum before the national media to voice what was in effect, a snubbing of our emancipation holiday," says Royal.

CNN, ABC, NBC, the Associated Press and the New York Times attended the press conference held in the National Press Club's Zenger Room. Since that press conference, there has been increased media coverage about the Juneteenth issue in Alaska.

The complaint was filed by Royal with the Alaska Attorney General's Office as a violation of the Alaska Executive Branch Ethics Act, the same act which Governor Palin was found in violation of in the 'Troopergate' scandal just last week. The statute provides, in this case, that a state official cannot withhold official action in order to affect a matter in which that official has a personal interest. The complaint maintains that the Governor's historic record on race relations as stated by Juneteenth representatives and others, demonstrates a personal ideology of disengagement with the African American community -- out of character with previous Alaskan administrations.

Cited in the complaint are Gwendolyn Alexander and Bishop Dave Thomas from the African American Historical Society of Alaska, and Reverend Ronald V. Myers, Chairman, National Juneteenth Holiday Campaign. Additionally, published comments from Eleanor Andrews, board chair of the Anchorage Urban League and attorney Rex Butler from an article by Linn Washington, Jr, columnist with the Philadelphia Tribune, were also included.

To view the complaint, go to (http://americashotmusician.org/Sarah_Palin_Complaint.pdf).

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SUSAN VERES
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