Palin backs independent for Alaska governor

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Palin backs independent for Alaska governor
Independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker speaks during a debate with Republican Gov. Sean Parnell, seated at left, on Monday, Sept. 29, 2014, in Juneau, Alaska. Walker and Parnell clashed on state spending and a gas line project. (AP Photo/Becky Bohrer)
File - In this March 8, 2014 file photo, former Alaska Gov. and 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin gestures to the crowd as she walks off-stage after addressing the Conservative Political Action Committee annual conference in National Harbor, Md. Palin defended as fair and commonsense the oil tax structure she championed while in office, a system that has been dismantled by state lawmakers and her successor, fellow Republican Sean Parnell. Palin also took a swipe at Parnell on Anchorage radio station KWHL Wednesday, May 7, 2014, when asked about Parnell's change in direction. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen, File)
Alaska Governor Sean Parnell, center, and Lieutenant Governor elect Mead Treadwell, left, discuss incoming election returns with a staffer Tuesday, Nov. 2, 2010, in Anchorage, Alaska. Parnell won reelction as governor and Treadwell has been elected to the office of Lieutenant Governor. Parnell became governor when Sarah Palin abruptly resigned from office in 2009. (AP Photo/ James Mason)
HOLD FOR STORY FILE - In this Feb. 20, 2009 file photo, former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, left, and then Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell are seen in in Wasilla, Alaska. It's deja vu in Alaska with governor Parnell addressing a high profile gathering of conservatives and making the case for energy independence and the need to tap the oil and gas stores in the state on a national stage. It's exactly what Sarah Palin did four years ago. (AP Photo/Al Grillo, file)
File - This Aug. 5, 2010 file photo shows Bill Walker, a Republican challenger to Gov. Sean Parnell in Alaska's Republican primary election. Walker, who finished second in last month's GOP gubernatorial primary, said Wednesday that he's "not inclined" to mount a write-in candidacy for the office. While he refused to dismiss the option, he doesn't see it as all that realistic of an alternative and isn't aggressively pursuing it. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen, File)
Superior Court Judge Niesje Steinkruger, right, puts the state seal on Gov. Sarah Palin's, center, oath of office document as Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell, left, watches after an inauguration ceremony in Fairbanks, Alaska, Monday, Dec. 4, 2006. Palin, 42 is the first female and youngest governor of Alaska. (AP Photo/Al Grillo)
Former Alaska Democratic party gubernatorial candidate Byron Mallot, left, appears with independent candidate Bill Walker, right, at a news conference Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014, in Anchorage, Alaska. Walker and Mallott will combine on a unified ticket to face Republican Gov. Sean Parnell in the general election. Mallott will run as Walker's lieutenant governor candidate.(AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin gives a thumbs up during her resignation speech during a ceremony in Fairbanks, Alaska, Sunday, July 26, 2009, where Gov. Sarah Palin stepped down and turned over power to Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell. (AP Photo/Al Grillo)
Sam Combs, right, a Democrat running for a House seat from Anchorage, poses for a selfie with independent gubernatorial candidate Bill Walker after a news conference Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2104, in Anchorage, Alaska. Walker held the news conference to announce he and former Democratic gubernatorial candidate, Byron Mallott, would form a unified ticket to take on Republican Gov. Sean Parnell in the general election. (AP Photo/Mark Thiessen)
CHARLESTON, WV - OCTOBER 30: Former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin greats supporters during a rally for Republican John Raese's U.S. Senate campaign October 30, 2010 in Charleston, West Virginia. Raese and West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, are embroiled in a hotly-contested race for the seat vacated following the death of Robert C. Byrd. (Photo by Randy Snyder/Getty Images)
NATIONAL HARBOR, MD - MARCH 08: Conservative pundit, television personality and former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin speaks during the 41st annual Conservative Political Action Conference at the Gaylord International Hotel and Conference Center on March 8, 2014 in National Harbor, Maryland. The conference, a project of the American Conservative Union, brings together conservative polticians, pundits and voters for three days of speeches and workshops. (Photo by T.J. Kirkpatrick/Getty Images)
INDIANOLA, IA - SEPTEMBER 03: Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin greets supporters following a speech during the Tea Party of America's 'Restoring America' event at the Indianola Balloon Festival Grounds September 3, 2011 in Indianola, Iowa. Yesterday Palin attended a Conservatives4Palin event. She is scheduled to speak at another Tea Party event in New Hampshire on Monday. The stops continue to fuel speculation that the former governor will run for president, a decision which she said she would make by the end of September. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
INDIANOLA, IA - SEPTEMBER 03: Former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin speaks to supporters during the Tea Party of America's 'Restoring America' event at the Indianola Balloon Festival Grounds September 3, 2011 in Indianola, Iowa. Yesterday Palin attended a Conservatives4Palin event. She is scheduled to speak at another Tea Party event in New Hampshire on Monday. The stops continue to fuel speculation that the former governor will run for president, a decision which she said she would make by the end of September. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
ARLINGTON, VA - MAY 29: Former U.S. Vice presidential candidate and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin rides on a motorcycle before participating in 'Rolling Thunder' rally May 29, 2011 in Arlington, Virginia. Although not an official guest, former U.S. Vice presidential candidate and Alaska governor Sarah Palin is expected to participate in today's motorcycle parade from the Pentagon to the National Mall. (Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)
WOODBURY, NY - FEBRUARY 17: Former Alaska governor and Republican vice president candidate Sarah Palin waves after speaking at the Long Island Association's annual meeting February 17, 2011 in Woodbury, New York. Palin discussed issues including the economy, health care, oil drilling and her possible presidential aspirations. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
CHARLESTON, WV - OCTOBER 30: Former vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin speaks to supporters of Republican John Raese during a rally for his U.S. Senate campaign October 30, 2010 in Charleston, West Virginia. Raese and West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin, a Democrat, are embroiled in a hotly-contested race for the seat vacated following the death of Robert C. Byrd. (Photo by Randy Snyder/Getty Images)
ANCHORAGE, AK - OCTOBER 28: Former Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin speaks in support of Senatorial candidate Joe Miller at a rally on October 28, 2010 in Anchorage, Alaska. Miller, a Tea Party favorite, is in a tight race with Repbulican incumbant Lisa Murkowsiki, who is running as a write- in candidate for Senate after losing to Miller in the Republican primary. (Photo by John Moore/Getty Images)
Former US vice-presidential candidate Sarah Palin speaks at a Tea Party rally in Searchlight, Nevada on March 27, 2010. Thousands of Tea Party activists attended the rally which kicks off their latest cross-country protest against big government and health care reform. AFP PHOTO / Robyn BECK (Photo credit should read ROBYN BECK/AFP/Getty Images)
Former Alaska Governor and Republican vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin arrives to sign copies of her recently released book 'Going Rogue: An American Life', sitting in front of a Christmas Tree on December 5, 2009, inside the BJ's discount warehouse in the Fair Lakes shopping mall in Fairfax, Virginia. Well over 1,000 people waited in a rare heavy Washington, DC, snowstorm for an autograph, some overnight. AFP PHOTO/Paul J. Richards (Photo credit should read PAUL J. RICHARDS/AFP/Getty Images)
GRAND RAPIDS, MI - NOVEMBER 18: Former Republican vice presidential candidate and Alaska Governor Sarah Palin signs her new book, 'Going Rogue' for a customer at a Barnes & Noble bookstore November 18, 2009 in Grand Rapids, Michigan. Palin chose Grand Rapids as the first stop of her book signing tour. (Photo by Bill Pugliano/Getty Images)
Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., right, and Sarah Palin at a campaign rally for McCain at the Pima County Fairgrounds in Tucson, Ariz., Friday, March 26, 2010. McCain, who is running for another term in the U.S. Senate, is joined by Palin for their first campaign rally together since losing the presidential election in 2008. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)
Former Alaska Governor and vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin appears at a rally for U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
Former Alaska Governor and vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin appears at a rally for U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
Former Alaska Governor and vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin shakes hands with some fans after appearing at a rally for U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel addresses a rally where he received support from Sarah Palin Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel addresses a rally where he received support from Sarah Palin Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
Former Alaska Governor and vice presidential nominee Sarah Palin shakes hands with some fans after appearing at a rally for U.S. Senate challenger Chris McDaniel Friday, May 30, 2014 at Jones County Junior College in Ellisville, Miss. McDaniel is challenging Republican Sen. Thad Cochran. (AP Photo/George Clark)
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ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) - Sarah Palin has snubbed her former lieutenant governor in his bid for re-election, supporting an independent candidate after Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell dismantled the increased oil taxes that were a signature part of her time as governor.

Palin on Tuesday night hosted a reception for the gubernatorial ticket of Bill Walker and Byron Mallott at her lakeside home north of Anchorage.

Walker, a former Republican, and Mallott, a Democrat, joined forces after the primary with Walker at the top of the ticket, in an effort to unseat Parnell in next month's election. Parnell, a Republican, has held office since Palin quit in July 2009 after her run as vice president.

Parnell's spokesman said in an email to the AP that the campaign won't comment at this time. Messages to Palin's spokesmen Thursday weren't immediately returned, and Walker's campaign says they don't consider it a full-on endorsement by Palin.

But coming from Palin - who has been known to energize tea party supporters and affect campaigns across the county by merely tweeting or Facebooking an endorsement - the support in her former state could be a boon for the independent ticket at a time when Parnell already is under fire over allegations of sexual abuse and fraud within the Alaska National Guard.

The relationship between Palin and her former lieutenant soured since their time together in office, with a major source of contention centered on taxes on the oil industry, which funds nearly all of Alaska state government.

Palin's plan placed higher taxes on the industry, and as a result, provided a multibillion dollar cash injection to state coffers.

Parnell initially supported Palin's taxation plan, but began efforts to change it after he was elected to his own term in office in 2010.

Oil companies complained that state taxes ate too much of the profits and discouraged new investment. Parnell's plan, approved by lawmakers, lowered taxes on the oil industry with the hope that companies would invest more in increased production and exploration.

Palin supported a ballot initiative in the August primary to repeal the law, but the vote failed. Months before that vote, Palin questioned Parnell's motivation for his about-face on her tax plan.

"Well, bless his heart. Remember that Sean Parnell came from the oil industry. He was, you know, an employee of ConocoPhillips ... lobbying for the cause there. So perhaps that's ingrained in him," she said during a May interview on an Anchorage radio station.

Parnell was the director of state government relations for ConocoPhillips in Alaska from 2000 to 2003.

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