Palin says she will continue to govern during campaign

Posted: Sunday, August 31, 2008

With Alaska's governor running for vice president and the lieutenant governor locked in a tight race for Congress, it's starting to look like no one's at the state's helm.

But Gov. Sarah Palin and Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell on Friday hastened to assure Alaskans they were still in charge.

After accepting John McCain's invitation to join his ticket, Palin issued a statement dispelling any notions that she would step down during the two-month long campaign.

"As the mother of five, I know how to multitask, and I will continue to promote the path of reform that we set out on together in the state of Alaska," Palin said.

Parnell was 151 votes behind U.S. Rep. Don Young after votes from Tuesday's GOP House primary were counted. There are thousands of outstanding ballots, which will be counted Sept. 5.

At a press conference with Parnell and Attorney General Talis Colberg on Friday, Colberg outlined the process for succession should McCain-Palin or Parnell prevail at the polls.

Palin, upon taking office, designated Colberg as next in line for lieutenant governor, and the state Legislature confirmed her choice.

If Palin and Parnell both win their races, Colberg would serve as governor with a lieutenant governor he appoints until a special election is held, within two to three months.

"And yes, under a certain type of sequence of events, I would have my Alexander Haig moment," Colberg said in a joking reference to President Reagan's Secretary of State who mistakenly announced he was in control when Reagan was hospitalized after being shot.

Parnell said business will continue as usual.

"This is that unusual situation in America where you actually have a governor and lieutenant governor working closely together," Parnell said. "We have a great team of people who are accomplishing the day to day business of state government, including the governor."

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