ABC News blogs are reporting that before Sarah Palin joined the Republican Party, she was a member of an Independent Party that has a plank suggesting that Alaska has a legal right to secede from the United States.
UPDATE: This story has been debunked as untrue. The person making the claim has backed off the story.
Officials of the Alaskan Independence Party say that Palin was once so independent, she was once a member of their party, which, since the 1970s, has been pushing for a legal vote for Alaskans to decide whether or not residents of the 49th state can secede from the United States.
And while McCain’s motto — as seen in a new TV ad — is "Country First," the AIP’s motto is the exact opposite — "Alaska First — Alaska Always."
Lynette Clark, the chairman of the AIP, tells ABC News that Palin and her husband Todd were members in 1994, even attending the 1994 statewide convention in Wasilla. Clark was AIP secretary at the time.
"We are a state’s rights party," says Clark, a self-employed goldminer. The AIP has "a plank that challenges the legality of the Alaskan statehood vote as illegal and in violation of United Nations charter and international law."
She says it’s not accurate to describe the party as secessionist — they just want a vote, she says, adding that the members of the AIP hold different opinions on what Alaska should be.
"My own separate opinion as an individual is that we should be an independent nation," Clark says. Others in the AIP "believe that being a commonwealth would be a good avenue to follow." Some advocate statehood — but a fuller statehood than exists now.
Can I point out that if any member of Obama’s campaign or his VP had been a member of a group like this — the cries of “Unamerican!” would resounded at deafening volume from now until election day.