Colberg could become Alaska's interim governor

By Chris Rizo | Sep 9, 2008

Talis Colberg (R)

ANCHORAGE, Alaska (Legal Newsline)-Alaska Attorney General Talis Colberg will become governor if Gov. Sarah Palin, the Republican vice presidential candidate, is elected, and if Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell wins his bid to become Alaska's new U.S. House member.

The attorney general, who in Alaska is appointed by the governor, would become interim governor if his current boss is elected alongside Republican presidential hopeful Sen. John McCain of Arizona.

A special election would be held to determine who would serve out Palin's unexpired term.

But if Democratic presidential nominee Sen. Barack Obama of Illinois wins in November and Parnell wins the congressional seat, Colberg would become the lieutenant governor.

Palin, who has spent 20 months as governor of Alaska and before that served as mayor of Wasilla, Alaska, is the Republican Party's first female candidate for vice president. She is 44-years-old.

Colberg, 49, a relatively low-profile attorney general, has been thrust into the media spotlight for his investigation into whether Palin fired Public Safety Commissioner Walter Monegan because he would not dismiss trooper Mike Wooten, who went through a bitter divorce with her sister before Palin became governor.

For his part, Colberg has acknowledged he made calls about Wooten to Department of Public Safety officials.

Before being appointed Alaska attorney general, Colberg was in private practice at the law firm of Kopperud and Hefferan in Wasilla.

Before that, from 1985 to 1992, Colberg was staff counsel to The Travelers Insurance Companies, the nation's second largest commercial property casualty and personal insurance carrier.

From Legal Newsline: Reach reporter Chris Rizo at chrisrizo@legalnewsline.com.

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