And what does she actually believe? And who were her first supporters? There is one candidate in this election that we still know very little about: the one who, for the first time in modern political history, refuses to hold a press conference in a national campaign. Max Blumenthal explores Palin's strong connections to the armed far right:

Palin backed [former Alaska Independence party chairman, Mark] Chryson as he successfully advanced a host of anti-tax, pro-gun initiatives, including one that altered the state Constitution’s language to better facilitate the formation of anti-government militias. She joined in their vendetta against several local officials they disliked, and listened to their advice about hiring. She attempted to name Stoll, a John Birch Society activist known in the Mat-Su Valley as “Black Helicopter Steve,” to an empty Wasilla City Council seat. “Every time I showed up her door was open,” said Chryson. “And that policy continued when she became governor.” ...

Unlike some radical right-wingers, Chryson doesn’t put forward his ideas  freighted with anger or paranoia. And in a state where defense of gun and property rights often takes on a real religious fervor, Chryson was able to present himself  as a typical Alaskan. He rose through party ranks by reducing the AIP’s platform to a single page that “90 percent of Alaskans could agree with.”

This meant scrubbing the old platform of what Chryson called “racist language” while accommodating the state’s growing Christian right movement by emphasizing the AIP’s commitment to the “traditional family.” “The AIP is very family-oriented,” Chryson explained. “We’re for the traditional family daddy, mommy, kids because we all know that it was Adam and Eve, not Adam and Steve. And we don’t care if Heather has two mommies. That’s not a traditional family.”

Chryson further streamlined the AIP’s platform by softening its secessionist language. Instead of calling for immediate separation from the Uni ted States, the platform now demands a vote on independence. Yet Chryson maintains that his party remains committed to full independence. “The Alaskan Independence Party has got links to almost every independence-minded movement in the world,” Chryson exclaimed. “And Alaska is not the only place that’s about separation. There’s at least 30 different states that are talking about some type of separation from the United States.”

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