Palin Does Damage Control

She knows how to draw a crowd, but right now that's the last thing Alaska Governor Sarah Palin wants. This week Palin is skipping the National Governors Association meeting and Conservative Political Action Conference in DC to lay low and work quietly in her home state. Food and fuel shortages are increasingly leaving rural Alaska in crisis, and Palin's high-profile absences aren't winning her any favor. When Palin left Alaska to attend the white-tie Alfalfa Club dinner in DC, she returned to find her husband and nine staffers in contempt for their months-old refusal to testify in her Troopergate scandal. Last week, state officials ordered Palin to pay $18,000 in back taxes. In spite of the cadre of highly vocal critics, however, the governor's poll numbers remain strong. The Hill credits Sarah’s ongoing success to her state’s strong base of conservative Christian voters, to whom she has reached out repeatedly in recent months.