[During her second mayoral term, Sarah Palin] hired the Anchorage-based lobbying firm of Robertson, Monagle & Eastaugh to lobby for earmarks for Wasilla. The effort was led by Steven Silver, a former chief of staff for Senator Ted Stevens, ... and it secured nearly $27 million in funds. The earmarks included $500,000 for a youth shelter, $1.9 million for a transportation hub, $900,000 for sewer repairs, and $15 million for a rail project linking Wasilla and the ski resort community of Girdwood .... Some of the earmarks were criticized by Senator McCain in 2001 and 2002.And this is just the proverbial tip of the iceberg.
Last week the Seattle Times underscored the stark realism of Sarah Palin's history of lobbying for earmarks:
But earmarks have never been a dirty word in Alaska, a huge state dotted with small communities that have enormous dollar needs for sewers, roads and other projects.You know, it's not really the price of these earmarks that make Sarah Palin's leadership so obscene, it's the campaign energy she's putting into arguing the lie that because she has fought earmarks she is a good choice for reforming Washington. That's why this is all one huge obscenity.
Instead, earmarks — pet projects that members of Congress fund but that no federal agency has requested — have become a mainstay of political life here, and one that Palin embraced from early on in her career as a mayor of Wasilla to the governor's mansion in Juneau.
Just this year, she sent to Sen. Ted. Stevens, R-Alaska, a proposal for 31 earmarks totaling $197 million — more, per person, than any other state.